State ag officials pleased FDA is reconsidering ‘added sugar’ label

AUGUSTA, Maine — Officials at the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry (DACF) are pleased by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) decision to reconsider its “added sugar” label on maple syrup and honey.

The DACF previously joined many agricultural producers to express concerns in a letter to the FDA stating, among other things, that usage of an “added sugars” label will likely lead consumers to believe that Maine maple syrup and honey are not pure, natural products.

“We are pleased that FDA is reconsidering their guidance on the ‘added sugar’ label,” said DACF Commissioner Walt Whitcomb. “Response to the ‘added sugar’ warning from Maine’s agricultural community has been overwhelmingly negative. The label is both confusing, misleading and inappropriate for a healthy, natural product. We are hopeful that now that the FDA knows better, it will do better.”

According to the DACF’s Comment Letter, that maple syrup and honey are significant Maine agricultural commodities that are experiencing a recent growth in sales as consumers seek new, unadulterated sweeteners.

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