New government food guidelines in Canada may lead to warning labels on dairy products

Read Time:   |  27th June 2017

Health Canada is in the middle of revamping the Canada Food Guide with the goal of getting Canadians to eat healthier – a move which could lead to warning labels on milk and cheese to highlight foods that are high in salt, sugar and saturated fat reports CBC News.

New government food guidelines in Canada may lead to warning labels on dairy products

Health Canada is in the middle of public consultations as it revamps the Canada Food Guide, and is considering a ban on advertising and marketing junk food to kids and teens, and looking to add front-of-package symbols warning consumers about foods that are high in salt, sugar or saturated fat.

Health Minister Jane Philpott emphasises that “one of the most important things about our health is what we eat and how we eat.” Philpott is connecting the dots between “years of eating unhealthy food” and the long-term cost of Canadians developing chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

Health Minister Jane Philpott. (Photo: Philip Ling/CBC)

“Under the proposed changes, these warning signs could end up on the front of homogenised milk, high-fat cheeses and sweetened yogurts. A second round of consultations of a new Canada Food guide also included a proposal to have more caution about consuming the dairy products”, reports CBC.

Inside the document, not yet publicly released, Health Canada recommends that Canadians eat more plant-based sources of protein, vegetables, fruit, and whole grains. Philpott also said that the new Food Guide will broaden its scope for those who are vegan and vegetarian.

The last Canada Food Guide which was released in 2011, does include plant proteins such as legumes, tofu, nut butters, nuts and seeds as suggested “alternative” proteins, and even recommends having these meat alternatives “often”.

It will come as no surprise to hear that dairy farmers are not happy about this proposed change, and are pushing back, as the proposals led the Dairy Farmers of Canada to send a newsletter to all MPs.

“Imagine yourself walking alongside your constituents in your local grocery store and seeing a carton of whole milk, a product that is widely considered to bring significant nutritional value, and that is recommended by health authorities as the drink of choice for young children. Unfortunately, on that carton of whole milk, despite its nutritional benefits, there is a big stop sign put there by the government to warn you away,” the newsletter states.

Source: CBS News.

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