By : Bonnie Lawrence
July 28, 2015 09:30 AM
Recently, the Food and Drug Administration announced that chain restaurants, grocery stores and other retailers that sell prepared foods will be given an extra year to comply with federal menu labeling rules, pushing the deadline to December 2016. The FDA agreed to extend the deadline after restaurants and food retailers said they needed more time to put the rules in place. Businesses are working on training employees, installing menus and menu boards and procuring or developing technology for more efficient and specific calorie label displays. But don’t get too excited about the extension – the impending regulations mean big changes how retailers sell prepared foods, so it’s time to get started.
The FDA rules require that restaurants and all other retailers that sell prepared food and operate more than 20 locations must post the calorie content of food on their menus, menu boards and displays. This means that for the first time, retailers such as grocers, convenience retailers and even vending machine operators must make available the same sort of nutritional information on their prepared foods (in-store made) that’s on packaged goods today.
The menus and displays will inform consumers that a 2,000-calorie diet is used as the basis for daily nutrition and additional nutritional content including gluten-free, allergies, sugar, protein, sodium, fat and much more is be available upon request. According to health experts, posting calorie counts helps to influence retailers to make changes and reevaluate their menu based on the calorie content.
In order to prepare for these upcoming changes, retailers need to start looking into retail solutions that are flexible enough to track nutritional information of your ingredients and produce the proper labels for your prepared foods. These systems should have the ability to import nutritional information from ingredients and run the calculations for the prepared foods which will save a lot of money in the future and reduce the risks associated with misstating important data, such as allergens. NCR has the perfect solution that will help retailers capture and calculate this information, generate nutritional labeling per the new guidelines, and will help retailers stay current into the future, if new guidelines are established.
When you’re selling prepared foods, every detail is important. With NCR’s Power Menu, you are able to control menu costs, track nutritional data, and manage inventory with more control than ever before. The solution also helps improve inventory accuracy of both ingredients and goods with suggested ordering based on production. Providing this level of information will not only help you build loyalty with consumers but it is also a key component in winning in the retail prepared foods market.