Canada is set to become the second high-income country to adopt a radical new food labeling system that alerts shoppers to foods high in sugar, salt, calories and saturated fat.
The system is already in use in Chile, and Mexico is considering adopting something similar. But the US is using NAFTA negotiations to try to override national food labeling policies in Mexico and Canada, says an article in Vox.
US trade representative Robert Lighthizer recently denounced such national food labeling policies as “protectionist” in a US Congress trade meeting. The US is promoting a NAFTA provision that would restrict front-of-package symbols that “inappropriately” suggest certain foods are harmful or unhealthy.
Chile, where 25 per cent of adults are obese, adopted the food labeling system in 2016. Obesity rates are also climbing in Canada, where the federal government is now in the final stages of drafting the regulations for a similar front-of-package warning system. Four label designs are under consideration.