According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the share of obesity has at least doubled in a total of 73 countries since 1980. Thirteen percent of all adults world-wide are considered obese (definition according to WHO: overweight: a BMI of 25-29.9, obesity: a BMI over 30). In order to counter an increasingly overweight population, packaging is expected to inform consumers in the EU of the nutritional values of food and beverages in future. However, an agreement has not yet been found.
NO STANDARDISED NUTRITIONAL VALUE LABELLING IN THE EU
In 2010, the introduction of traffic light labels on food and beverage packaging was planned in the EU. However, in the end, food corporations prevented the labelling.
Instead, an agreement was reached on providing tabular information of a total of seven nutritional values on packaged food: on energy, fat, saturated fats, carbohydrates, sugar, protein and salt. The numbers refer to content per 100 grams and 100 millilitres respectively. However, critics object to the tiny writing of the information printed on the back of the packaging. They further maintain that the information is incomprehensible for laypersons;in addition, it does not make a recommendation for or against consumption.