Nutrition Labelling Frequently Asked Questions

Nutrition and allergen labelling

Here are answers to your most popular asked questions relating to nutrition and allergen labelling.

What has changed?

The Food Information to Consumers Regulation has affected the way in which nutrition, allergen and country of origin information is displayed in the UK and across Europe. Products with the labelling began to appear on our shelves in September 2013.

Additionally, in June 2013, the Department of Health announced a national scheme for Front of Pack traffic light labelling. We adopted this scheme to help bring about consistency of front of pack nutrition labelling for UK consumers.

What does this mean for me?

The way in which nutrition information is displayed on both front and back of pack has changed from September 2013 onwards. The way allergens are labelled on the back of packs has changed. You’ll be able to find a guide to the changes on our website and in our stores.

Guide to the labelling

What does this have to do with Sainsbury’s?

Sainsbury’s has a long history of leadership in the field of nutrition labelling. We were the first UK retailer to voluntarily introduce multiple traffic light nutrition labelling on the front of our packs and we continue to strive to make our labels as clear and informative as possible for all of our customers.

We’re the biggest adopter of traffic light labelling in the UK and around 9,000 of our own brand products have been changed to incorporate the labelling..

What changed exactly?

Front of pack

  • Our multi-traffic light labelling changed from our circular “Wheel” of health traffic light label to a lozenge
  • Kilojoules (kJ) are now shown as well as calories (kcal) per 100g for foods as well as per 100mls for drinks per serving
  • The term “Guideline Daily Amount” (GDA) has been replaced with “Reference Intake” and %GDA has been replaced with %RI (Reference Intake)
  • Energy values are no longer colour coded under the scheme
  • A change from the use of ‘sat fat’ to the term ‘saturates’
  • ‘Sugars’ will be used instead of ‘sugar’.


  • The order in which nutrition information is shown in the back of pack nutrition table has changed
  • Under the Regulations, we are no longer able to show the percentage of the Reference Intake for fibre that a product provides
  • Sodium is no longer labelled – ‘salt’ is shown instead
  • There are Reference Intakes for carbohydrate (260g) & protein (50g) [the old GDAs for carbohydrate & protein were 230g and 45g respectively]
  • We now label energy (calories and kilojoules) on our beers, wines and spirits.

Where can I find out more?

By going to food Labelling you can find out full details of the changes as well as read about other food Labelling on our packs.

How can I get in touch with Sainsbury’s?

If you have anything to tell us or ask us, please get in touch.

Ways to get in touch with Sainsbury’s