Determining Serving Sizes For Nutrition Facts Labels
Here is what you need to know about determining serving sizes for Nutrition Facts labels.
- The labeling regulations state that serving sizes should be expressed in "common household measures". This includes units like "cookies", "muffins", "pieces", "slices", etc.
- You can define the units for the serving size with the Add or Change Units procedure. Refer to the article Defining Units of Measure for details about defining units.
Serving Sizes are based on "Reference Amounts".
- Determine the reference amount for your product.
- For US labels, refer to the table Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed per Eating Occasion.
- For Canadian labels, refer to the table Table of Reference Amounts for Food.
- Determine the number of pieces or quantity of your product that is closest to the reference amount.
For nutraCoster 3.0 you can use the Serving Size Helper to determine the serving size.
- Specify a group and subgroup for your product.
- Pick a suggested unit for your serving size, or suggest a different unit.
- nutraCoster will determine the Reference Amount from the group and subgroup, and suggest compliant serving sizes using the suggested unit.
Serving Sizes are usually expressed in whole numbers. For products that are sold in large discrete units and divided for consumption, use fractions such as 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 or smaller fractions that can be generated by further division by 2 or 3.
Decimals are not allowed in serving sizes.
Note that there is an exception to the use of reference amounts. For example, the reference amount for muffins is 55g (about 2oz). If you make a 4oz muffin, and you reasonably expect the consumer to eat the entire muffin at one sitting, you should set the serving size to one muffin.
Once you have determined the appropriate serving size for your product, refer to the article Specifying Serving Size for Nutrition Reports.