What 3 food marketing claims actually mean, in health terms

What 3 food marketing claims actually mean, in health terms

MPeople care about the words on food packages more than ever. As a result, companies have created eye-catching marketing claims to stand out from products without those claims (and to justify the higher price tags). But have you ever wondered what these claims actually mean?

The answer is not simple. “The Food and Drug Administration doesn’t have much approved marketing claims; They have strict regulations and rules about nutritional content claims, which characterize the level of nutrients in food,” says food scientist and chemical engineer Erin, aka. Food science babe on social media. “Saying that a product cures a disease or disease is illegal because it is not a drug, but then you have technically realistic marketing claims. [and allowed] But also misleading.”

Some marketing claims are intended to create fear in consumers, despite various regulations in place to ensure food safety. “Deceptive marketing claims can fuel movements like ‘clean eating’ that are not based on scientific arguments,” adds Erin. “At the end of the day, companies are just trying to get you to buy their products.”

With all that said, what is the actual meaning of these popular marketing claims? Let’s see what the food world has to say.

What the three claims of food marketing actually mean, according to a food scientist

1. “No Added Hormones”

If you are looking to reduce your hormone intake through animal products, you may be looking for products without added hormones. Erin says this marketing claim is somewhat deceptive. “You’ll find that meat products are marketed as ‘no added hormones,’ which is very real and real, but at the same time, hormones are being added to the [certain] animal products Not allowed since the fiftiesIt’s true: the USDA has The use of hormones is prohibited In organic and conventional poultry for decades, while a handful of natural and synthetic hormones have been approved for use in beef, cattle and sheep. It is also important to note that the list of approved natural and synthetic hormones has been shown to be safe for people to eat and does not harm the treated animal or negatively affect the environment.

However, you will find many poultry products marketed to attract consumers looking to reduce their intake of hormones. There is no harm in marketing animal products as such, but Erin says the claim could confuse consumers by suggesting that other poultry has added hormones. It doesn’t, which is why companies using the “no hormones added” label must include an asterisk or a disclaimer that explicitly states that “federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones.” However, the phrase can be used on the label of beef and pork products, as long as the producer submits sufficient documentation to the USDA that no hormones are used in animal husbandry.

2. No antibiotics

more Consumers demand antibiotic-free animal products Because of growing concerns about the consumption of antibiotic residues, the environment, animal welfare, and food safety in general. But the chance of antibiotics being taken by animals is small. “Even if an animal is given antibiotics for its whole life, there are a lot of antibiotics. strict regulations In periods of withholding so the drug can get out of their system,” Erin says. “Animal products [also] It has been tested for No antibiotic residue Before you sell it – if there is, it should be disposed of.”

So, is the inclusion of the phrase “no antibiotics” misleading? According to Erin, it depends. On the other hand, this label can distinguish animal products that have not been given antibiotics before. On the other hand, Erin says, “This claim can often lead to the assumption that if the packaging doesn’t say it, the product has antibiotics in it.” (Again, the food in the market does not contain antibiotic residues.) However, if you are looking to buy meat products that have been Start With antibiotics, you can look for products with a “no antibiotics added” label.

3. No artificial ingredients

Synthetic ingredients are man-made ingredients used to improve the appearance and taste of certain foodstuffs. Concerns about the effect of synthetic ingredients Over the years, this has led many companies to put a “no artificial ingredients” label on their packaging to stand out from other options. However, Erin points out that the term “artificial ingredient” is not defined (or regulated) by the Food and Drug Administration, unless the flavor is described in products. Regardless, she says this claim doesn’t really tell you anything about the product.

“There are a lot of natural things that are very harmful, so just saying something is natural doesn’t mean it’s safer or more nutritious,” she adds. She also showed how including this marketing claim often perpetuates the idea that something artificial is a bad thing, when food additives are constantly regulated by Various federal authorities To make sure foods are safe to eat and are accurately labeled. For this reason, she advises not to worry too much about man-made or natural additives in food products, unless you are allergic or cannot tolerate them well.

How do you think about marketing claims

Erin says relying on marketing claims is unnecessary. “Don’t worry too much about the labels on the front other than what it is, what the flavor is, and what the actual product is, if you’re concerned about its nutritional content,” she advises. “Look at the nutrition board, look at the ingredients — but as far as the front of the package is concerned, it’s all about marketing. Buy what you want and what you have access to.”

If you are concerned about the food supply chain in the United States, Erin stresses that there are many rules and regulations in place to ensure the safety of our food supply. She adds, “People are preoccupied with additives and ingredients and are told they are toxic, but in reality, food safety issues in our food supply are related to things like salmonella, listeria and E. coli.” “It’s understandable to be concerned about what you’re consuming, but our food supply is very safe.” Moral of the story: Only buy what makes you happy, what you can afford, and what ultimately nourishes your soul.

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