Daily Intake Labelling Scheme
What is the Daily Intake Guide?
The Daily Intake Guide has been designed by the food and beverage industries to promote healthy dietary choices by consumers.
The labelling scheme, which was launched in November 2006, is to be included on packs in addition to the nutrition information panel. It helps consumers understand information about the energy and nutrient levels a product contains.
The scheme is a simple graphic representation (as seen below) of energy and product nutrients and how much it contributes to a person’s daily intake. The thumbnail design provides at-a-glance information on the content for a serving of a product, and the relevance of this amount to the daily diet.
For example, the nutrition information panel shows that one serve of product X has 870 kilojoules whereas, the Daily Intake Guide shows that consuming 870 kilojoules represents 10% of daily energy needs.
The Australian Food & Grocery Council (AFGC) has an excellent website which contains information about Daily Intake Guide labelling and how to use it, along with an easy-to-use DI calculator. It can be accessed by clicking this link: www.mydailyintake.net
How does it work?
Daily Intakes are a set of reference values for acceptable intakes of energy and a variety of nutrients, including protein, fat, saturated fat, carbohydrates, sugars and sodium. They are based on the Food Standards Code’s listing for “the average adult diet” of 8700kJ.
They represent an acceptable intake and can be used as a guide for a balanced diet. The percentage of daily intake is the proportion of daily intake of energy or a nutrient in one serve of the food.
For example, a serve of food that contributes no more than 7 per cent of a person’s daily energy requirements would make an acceptable snack, but by viewing the fat, sugar and salt content they can also make a decision about whether they feel it is the right snack for them.
Who is involved?
The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council and the AFGC have worked together with the food industry to develop this initiative, based on the parameters of the Food Standards Code.
The Daily Intake Guide has the support of iconic Australasian brands such as Nestle, Kraft, Campbell Arnott’s, Kelloggs, Unilever, Mars, Cadbury Schweppes, George Weston Foods, Smiths and PepsiCo as well as McDonald’s, IGA, the Australian Beverages Council and the Confectionery Manufacturers of Australasia.
Nearly 500 products now display the Daily Intake Guide thumbnails.
Putting the Daily Intake Guide into practice
Participating manufacturers are responsible for representing Daily Intake Guide Labelling in a manner that will aid consumer understanding and use. Representation of %DI information for energy is a minimum requirement, while the use of additional %DI information (fat, protein, saturated fat, carbohydrate, sugars and sodium) is optional.