Labeling & Nutrition

Food Labeling and Nutrition Overview

These FDA Food Labeling web pages address the labeling requirements for foods under the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act and its amendments. Food labeling is required for most prepared foods, such as breads, cereals, canned and frozen foods, snacks, desserts, drinks, etc. Nutrition labeling for raw produce (fruits and vegetables) and fish is voluntary. We refer to these products as "conventional" foods. For detailed information on dietary supplements, a special category of products that comes under the general umbrella of foods, but which has separate labeling requirements, see "dietary supplements."*

* Terms such as "functional foods" or "nutraceuticals" are widely used in the marketplace. Such foods are regulated by FDA under the authority of the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act, even though they are not specifically defined by law.


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General Information on Food Labels


Additional Information Related to Food Labeling

  • Specific Topics and Categories:
    includes allergens, biotechnology, botanicals and novel ingredients, BSE (Mad Cow Disease), eggs, "fresh", juice, labeling of foods needing refrigeration, and trans fatty acids.
  • CFSAN Home Page for:
    • Other Food Related topics (including dietary supplements, food safety, food additives and biotechnology)
    • Interacting with the FDA (reporting problems, submitting petitions, etc.)
    • Obtaining information from FDA (freedom of information requests, Laws enforced by FDA, Code of Federal Regulations, etc.)