May 10th, 2016
FDA reverses stance, affirms KIND can use “healthy” on labels
By KIND Editor
By now we hope you know that there’s nothing more important to us than the relationship we share with you—our fans. You’ve been the fuel on this now 12-year journey to make healthy and tasty snacking a way of life.
You’ve also stood by us when we’ve faced challenges. One of these challenges came last year when KIND received a warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Most notably, the letter asked us to remove healthy from the back wrapper of four KIND bars, stating that our use of the term was in violation of a regulation (more info here). The FDA also pointed to a number of other items on our packaging that KIND has since brought to compliance. Fast forward 13 months. The FDA has now affirmed KIND can use healthy on our wrappers again—just as we had it before – in connection with our corporate philosophy but not as a nutrient content claim. While we’re pleased by the FDA’s decision, it doesn’t change what is and always has been our focus – to create delicious snacks made with wholesome ingredients.
And the news gets even bigger…The FDA has confirmed that it intends to reevaluate the regulatory definition of “healthy,” an action that was prompted in part by KIND. The current standard was created with the best intentions 20 years ago, when the benefits of consuming “good fats” (like those found in nuts) were not fully understood. Under the regulation, foods like fat-free chocolate pudding and children’s sugary cereal can bear a healthy nutrient claim, but foods like nuts and avocados can’t. None of this made much sense to us, so last December we filed a Citizen Petition with top health and nutrition experts. The Petition urged the FDA to update its requirements related to the term healthy so that they’re better aligned with modern science and federal guidelines. You can read more about the Petition here.
Since KIND filed the Petition, momentum has been building. From leading nutrition experts to Senators and members of the House of Representatives, there is a rising call to update the regulatory definition of healthy.
So, while today is an exciting moment for KIND, our work is not done. Healthy has always been more than just a word on a label to us – so whether or not we can use it on our snack bars is not what’s most important here. What’s most important is ensuring that consumers like you are receiving clear and consistent guidance, and are able to depend on food companies and the government to provide you with the information you need to make smart eating choices. We promise to keep playing our part in the food policy conversation.
Until next time, wishing you good snacks and even better health.
-Your KIND Team
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