The system ranks foods on a scale of 1- 100, from the least nutritious to the healthiest.
The system, licensed from NuVal LLC, employs a system designed by experts from Yale University. It takes the information from food’s nutrition labels, as well as other public information to calculate it against the federal dietary recommendations.
While these scores are much more factual and accurate than the failed food labeling system which put a green check mark on certain foods produced by their paid subscribers, there is still a controversy among purveyors.
For example, General Mills Cheerios scored a rank of 37, while Post’s Shredded Wheats received a 91. The General Mills spokesperson, felt that the ranking was unfair, citing that the cereal was low fat, cholesterol free and made primarily of whole- grain oats. The NuVal spokesman stated that the Cheerios had more sodium and less fiber than the Shredded Wheats, justifying its data.
NuVal does not show the scores to anyone before they appear on the grocer’s shelves, hopefully insuring that there are no outside factors affecting the scores.
Consumers are responding to the information, and making healthier choices within each food group.
This is just one step in a nation wide effort to help people make educated decisions in their food purchases. Walmart, the largest food retailer in America will be rolling out a similar program this year.
photo: Glasshouse Images