Below are statements to NBC News in response to Wednesday’s Rossen Report about fruit in food labels:
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Statement from Brian Kennedy, spokesperson, Grocery Manufacturers Association:
The Food and beverage industry is committed to providing consumers with the products and information they need to achieve and maintain healthy lifestyles. We agree and support the federal laws requiring food labels to be truthful and non-misleading. Fruit images on a food label are sometimes used to characterize or depict the flavor of a food product, as permitted by FDA regulations. In these cases, companies must also include the term "naturally flavored" or "artificially flavored" on the label. Sometimes food product labels also depict products prepared with milk and/or other garnishes such as fruits. These depictions are serving suggestions for consumers that they can consider including in their preparation of the particular food product. The term "serving suggestion" is also voluntarily included near the fruit image on the food labels of such products by the majority of food manufacturers.
Statement from Chris Spina, spokesperson, Pinnacle Foods (Aunt Jemima):
We are committed to our customers and to providing high-quality products. The blueberries shown on the packaging of Aunt Jemima Frozen Blueberry Pancakes and Waffles are a topping serving suggestion, similar to what we do with other package shots that portray strawberries and raspberries. It is not our intention to imply through these stylistic shots that the products contain whole fruit. We have worked to ensure that our ingredient labels clearly define what ingredients are in our products, and the Blueberry Pancakes and Waffles clearly state the inclusion of "Blueberry Bits."
We have recently refreshed many of our frozen pancake and waffle ingredient statements so that our recipes contain high-quality, natural ingredients - such as milk, eggs and flour - that most consumers use at home every day. We will continue to listen to our customers and evaluate and update our products to provide consumers with wholesome products they expect from Aunt Jemima Frozen Breakfast.
Statement from Danielle Dubois, spokesperson, Coca-Cola (vitaminwater):
In compliance with FDA labeling regulations, vitaminwater® focus is clearly labeled as strawberry-kiwi flavored with other natural flavors, as required for beverages with added flavors and no juice.
Statement from Kris Charles, spokesperson, Kellogg Company:
These products include dried, pureed or flaked fruit, or fruit puree concentrate. The term "Fruit" is also used to describe the flavor of some products. All our products are labeled in compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
Statement from Michael Neuwirth, spokesperson, Dannon:
These products provide kids with wholesome and essential low-fat dairy that kids need, and these products are clearly labeled 'fruit flavored' on the front panel. Many kids prefer yogurt without fruit pieces, and these products show fruit so people can clearly identify the flavor they are buying.
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