Serving Size Scams Exploit Loophole in FDA Nutrition Labeling Rules

The Food and Drug Administration has helpful policies in place to help consumers understand the nutrient and calorie content of various packaged foods. Sure enough, the companies selling the packaged foods find ways to fool the public.

This Men’s Health article has numerous examples, including these two:

Serving Size Rip-Off: Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts

Listed calories: 200
Servings per box: 2
Total calories: 400

What’s worse than eating 200 calories of enriched flour stuffed with sugary fruit goo? Eating twice that many calories without even realizing it. The nutritional information on a box of Pop-Tarts lists one tart as a serving, but these iconic morning pastries come wrapped in twos, forcing you to decide between eating two Pop-Tarts now or one stale Pop-Tart tomorrow. Here’s a smarter option: Drop a piece of whole-wheat bread into your toaster, and then spread it with strawberry jam and be on your way. You’ll take in fewer calories with more fiber and real fruit.

20 Habits That Make You Fat

Serving Size Rip-Off: Campbell’s Chunky Microwaveable Soup

Listed calories: 200
Servings per container: 2
Total calories: 400


Okay, clearly this is a single-serve cup. As if you’d ever microwave the cup, eat half, and then put the rest in the fridge to microwave another day. C’mon Campbell’s, you’re better than that.