Nearly 80 percent of U.S. adults used Nutrition Facts panel on food labels in buying decisions
Nearly 4 out of 5 adults aged 20 and older reported they regularly used the Nutrition Facts panel when deciding to buy a food product during the most recent wave of the Flexible Consumer Behavior Survey (FCBS), from 2017 to March 2020. That is 79 percent, which is much higher than the 62 percent of adults who reported regular use of the Nutrition Facts panel in 2005–06. Regular use includes using the panel “sometimes,” “most of the time,” or “always” in food purchasing decisions. The Nutrition Facts panel on packaged foods lists the amount of calories, fat, fiber, carbohydrates, and some other nutritional information—all of which helps consumers compare products and make healthier food choices. Standardized nutrition information became accessible to U.S. consumers on almost all packaged foods sold in grocery stores, supermarkets, superstores, and other retail stores following the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act of 1990. Since 2007, USDA, Economic Research Service (ERS) has sponsored the FCBS by providing partial funding for data collection and survey administration. FCBS is a module of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), which collects information on U.S. consumers’ knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about nutrition and food choices. This chart appears on ERS’ Flexible Consumer Behavior Survey topic page, updated in June 2023.
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