"National survey data indicate that the frequency of food label use among consumers has increased in the past decade; however, despite widespread use, certain elements of the Nutrition Facts label are outdated and confusing to consumers. Consumer research highlights the importance of salient and easy-to-understand nutrition information. The purpose of the Nutrition Facts label as a public health tool is to provide consumers with nutrition information that may help them make more informed food choices. Mandating declaration of certain nutrition information on the label may also prompt food manufacturers to reformulate products to make them healthier and more attractive to consumers. Increasing awareness about the nutritional content of various foods may promote healthier eating behaviors among consumers, resulting in lower calorie intake and, over time, decreasing rates of overweight and obesity. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) of 1938 authorizes the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to regulate labeling of most food products other than meat and poultry. The Nutrition Labeling and Education Act (NLEA) of 1990 amended the FFDCA to require that most foods, with the exception of meat and poultry, bear nutrition content labels"
CRS Report for Congress, R43733