In a bid to combat falling sales, America’s dairy producers are asking the government to revise the official definition of milk.
The dairy industry is pressuring the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to alter milk’s “standard of identity” to permit the addition of reduced-calorie sweeteners without the need for labeling. Under current law, adding artificial ingredients like sucralose or aspartame requires manufacturers to signal their presence to consumers on the label, Boston’s WCVB notes.
If the FDA adopts the proposal, milk with artificial sweeteners wouldn’t be labeled as “reduced-sugar” milk, but just as milk.
Critics of the move say that labels should accurately reflect a food’s contents, including artificial sweeteners, which some consumer prefer to avoid.
Sales of milk have fallen by 30% in recent years, leaving diary producers in competition with more popular sugary drinks. Getting children to switch back to milk would boost their health and nutrition, the industry argues. Milk producers are also looking at new ways to market milk.
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