FDA Releases a Proposed Update to Define “Healthy”

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Sept. 28, 2022, that it is updating the definition for the content claim “healthy” on food packages to be more consistent with current nutrition science and Federal dietary guidelines. According to industry representatives, the updated version is very positive for nuts. However, FDA is seeking comments on whether nuts with a higher saturated fat content may claim the “healthy” title.

In 1994, the FDA established Federal dietary guidelines. Over time, research has been conducted on nuts showing more and more health benefits. As a result, the FDA is revising the healthy definition. The latest provides nuts and seeds to be considered healthy if equal to or less than 5% saturated fat.

Industry members are encouraged to comment on including pecans as part of the new healthy definition. The link to the federal register notice may be found here.