Information within the Nutrition Facts Table
Additional Information (Q&A)

Single Serving Products

How does one determine a serving for pie crust if the reference amount is not given in grams or millilitres, only a fraction of a pie crust? Item 20 of Schedule M of the FDR for pie crust is ⅙ of a 20 cm crust or ⅛ of a 23 cm crust.

B.01.002A 2(b) or (c) of the FDR require reference amounts in grams or millilitres to calculate single servings. As this does not apply in this case, B.01.002A(2)(a) must be used in this situation : the quantity of food that can reasonably be consumed by one person at a single eating occasion. This is determined based on presentation and amount, i.e. a tart shell with an area smaller than the reference amount (< 52 cm2) would be considered a single serving as would a shell presented as the basis of a single meal, e.g. lunch-sized quiche shell.

Would a granola bar with a net weight of 75 grams be considered a single serving, even though the reference amount for this type of product is 30 grams?

Section B.01.002A of the Food and Drug Regulations state that a serving of stated size shall be the quantity of the food in the package if the quantity of the food can reasonably be consumed by one person at a single sitting. In this case, the granola bar meets this condition so the serving size must be the entire content of the package, i.e. 75 grams.

Can the serving size for a (drained) canned meat product be declared as "Per ½ can drained (46g)" when the reference amount is 50g and the suggested serving size is 50g to 100g? Is there any flexibility in the serving size range or should this be treated as a single serving container and declared as "Per 1 can drained (92g)"?

The manufacturer has some flexibility in determining serving sizes. This serving size is based on the edible portion of the food as sold, and is the amount of food that one adult would reasonably eat at one eating occasion. However, while companies may have some flexibility in choosing their serving sizes, B.01.002A(2)(b) of the Food and Drug Regulations (FDR) states that "a serving of stated size shall be the net quantity of the food in the package if […] the reference amount of the food is less than 100 g or 100 mL and the package contains less than 200% of that reference amount[…]"

Since the reference amount of canned meat is 55 g, which is under 100 g, and since the package (1 can) contains less than 200% (200% x 55 g = 110 g) of the reference amount, the serving size must be the net quantity of the product, as per regulations.

Serving Size Declaration

When stating serving size (as gram weight) for meat with bones (e.g., chicken wings or drumsticks), should it be specified that the serving size represents only the edible portion and not the bones?

The nutrient information presented in the Nutrition Facts table is based on a specific amount of food (edible portion). The words "edible portion" should be included to clarify that the weight of the serving includes only the portion of the food that is consumed, i.e. the chicken and not the bones of the chicken.

For example: "Serving Size 1 Drumstick (100g edible portion)"

"Pour" or "par" for the Nutrition Facts table serving size

When are "par" and "pour" used for the serving size in a French Nutrition Facts table?

"Par" and "pour" are synonyms and can usually be switched. "Pour" tends to be more widely used when there is a specific number of something, for example; "per 3 pieces" would be "pour 3 morceaux". If the serving size is ½ cup, one would be more likely to use "par ½ tasse". If one wanted to use "pour" for a serving size of a ½ cup, the appropriate phrase would be "pour une ½ tasse".

"Per approximately" or "per about" in the serving size

Can "about" or "approximately" be used in the consumer friendly measure for serving size?

"Per about 5 pieces (xx g)" , "per approximately 1 fillet (xx g) " or other similar declarations are allowed when there is variability in the consumer friendly part of the measure. It is not permitted for uniformly sized products, e.g. stacked potato chips, most cookies, crackers, etc.

Example: a box of 4 fish fillets, the net weight of the product is 500 g and each fillet is roughly 125 g. However, due to natural variation they are not completely uniform, one could be 115 g, another 135 g. In cases like this it is acceptable to use "per approximately 1 fillet (125 g)" which is meant to indicate to the consumer that 125 g is roughly the size of each individual fillet. The metric measure must be a precise number and the nutrient values must meet the compliance test for that metric value.

Ranges in the serving size

Is it acceptable to declare serving size in the following manner – "per 5-6 onion rings", "per 6-8 scallops"?

No. "About" or "approximately" (see above) sufficiently indicates to the consumer that the weight corresponds to roughly that number, allowing for variations in size of irregular pieces. A range in the serving size would increase the room for varied interpretations by the consumer (e.g. "are those 4-6 big onion rings or 4-6 small ones?"). It is the manufacturer's responsibility to make as accurate a representation as possible.

Use of "per 100 g" exclusively as the serving size

When can "per 100 g" be used on its own as the serving size declaration in the Nutrition Facts table, without a consumer friendly measure?

"Per 100 g" can be used on multi-serving meats (e.g. roast beef), poultry (e.g. whole chicken), fish fillets, or catch weight meat, poultry or fish products that cannot divided up into pieces or slices of similar size. It can also be used on deli meats sold in chubs or industrial formats or on single serving containers when 100 g is the net quantity of the container. These situations are covered under the Serving Size section. Examples of products that may use "per 100 g" alone as the serving size declaration are:

  • whole roast beef
  • whole chickens
  • whole turkeys
  • chub/industrial format of salami or other deli meats
  • steaks, pork chops, when multi-serving variable size
  • side of salmon
  • whole hams
  • whole fish
  • fish fillets (with the exception of uniform preportioned ones)
  • mixed trays of drumsticks, thighs, chicken breasts

When "per 100 g" cannot be used exclusively as the serving size

When can "per 100 g" (or other metric weight) on its own not be used as the serving size declaration in the Nutrition Facts Table, i.e. a consumer friendly (visual) measure must be provided?

Anything other than the above Q & A. Examples of products that must include a consumer friendly measure as part of the serving size declaration, with examples, are:

  • ground meat and poultry (e.g. per ½ cup (xx g))
  • bacon (e.g. per 2 slices (xx g))
  • beef jerky (e.g. serving about 1 piece (xx g))
  • hamburger patties (e.g. per 1 patty (xx g))
  • stewing meat (e.g. per 1 cup (xx g))
  • prepackaged sliced deli meats (e.g. per about 2 slices (55 g))
  • non-uniform chocolate Easter bunnies (e.g. per ¼ package (xx g))

Note: "about" or "approximately" may be used in the consumer friendly measure when the products vary in size and may not be exactly the weight indicated.

U.S. versus Canadian household measures

Can the U.S. common household measure be used in the serving size declaration in the Nutrition Facts table e.g. 1 cup (240 ml)?

Since Canadian measuring devices are used in Canadian homes, the common household measure declaration must be Canadian. Most measuring cups and spoons sold in Canada reflect the metric equivalents of the household measures, e.g. 250 mL for a cup and 15 mL for a tablespoon.

Basis of Information – Foods in Liquid

What is the basis of nutrition information for foods sold in liquids such as oil, brine, syrup?

Nutrition information is based on the edible portion of the food as sold. For foods sold in a liquid, the serving size should be based on the typical consumption of the product.

Examples:

  • The liquids of pickles, artichokes, olives, etc. are packed is not normally consumed, therefore the nutrient information should be based on the drained product per pickle (xx g).
  • The syrup in which canned fruit is packed is typically consumed with the fruit per ½ cup (xx ml).
  • The oil in sardines or tuna is not typically consumed, therefore the nutrient information should be based on the drained product: per xx sardines (xx g) or for tuna in oil: per 1 can (xx g).
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