What are USDA labels?
Ensure your food product labels meet federal standards.
The United States Department of Agriculture has developed standards and guidance for labeling meat, poultry, and egg products to ensure that all labels are truthful and not misleading. These efforts aim to protect consumers from misbranded and economically adulterated products. Imprint is familiar with the USDA standards and can help you design a label that communicates the required information.
What are the requirements for USDA compliant labels?
The USDA requires that specific information be included on your label in a distinct format. On the principle display panel (PDP), labels must include the product name, handling statement, a legend or establishment number, and the net weight statement. USDA labels must also include an information panel with the ingredients statement, signature line, and nutrition facts. Safe handling instructions must be included somewhere on the label, though they don’t have a required location.
Not all labels must be approved, but some do. If your labels contains any of the following, you must submit it to the Food Safety and Inspection Service for approval:
- Temporary approvals
- Labels for export only that bear labeling deviations
- Religious exemption (ex. Buddhist exemptions, Confucian exemptions)
- Labels bearing special statements and claims (including organic, antibiotic-free, whole grain, etc.)
If your label doesn’t contain any of the aforementioned statements, then it is considered generically approved. It can be used without prior permission, as long as it still contains the required information (product name, nutritional information, etc.).
What are the benefits of USDA compliant labels?
Compliant labels benefit your business in more ways than one. For companies that need to submit their label for approval, you want to ensure that your label will pass. Otherwise, you’ll have to complete the approval process again, wasting valuable time and money while your product sits waiting. Proper labeling can also help you build trust with your consumers. This can be especially important in recall situations, where you need to be able to easily communicate with the public which products may be contaminated.
How can Imprint help?
When you partner with the experienced staff at Imprint, we can help you design a product label that meets federal standards. With a compliant label, you’ll reduce the amount of time spent in the approval process. We’ll help you design a custom label that communicates your brand’s image while still bearing all the necessary information. No matter what size, color, shape, or design, Imprint will help create a label that works for your company.
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