Examining Front-of-Package Product Names and Ingredient Lists of Infant and Toddler Food Containing Vegetables

Mackenzie J. Ferrante, Kameron J. Moding, Laura L. Bellows, Alyssa J. Bakke, John E. Hayes, Susan L. Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To investigate the alignment between vegetables and fruits listed in the ingredients of commercially produced infant and toddler food (ITF) and inclusion in front-of-package product names. Design: A database of commercial ITF containing vegetables (n = 548) was created. Inclusion of each vegetable or fruit in the product name (yes/no), form (ie, whole/puree, juice/juice concentrate, etc), and ingredient list position (ie, first, second) were recorded. Vegetables were classified per US Department of Agriculture categories; fruits were classified into 2 categories. Analysis: Chi-square tests of association tested associations between product name inclusion and (1) vegetable and fruit category, (2) form, and (3) form by category. Results: Associations were observed between vegetable and fruit categories and inclusion in product names [χ2 (6, N = 1,462) = 70.3, P < 0.001]. Vegetables in the US Department of Agriculture dark green category were more likely to appear in product names (94%; standardized residual [SR] = 2.1), as were other vegetables (62%; SR = 4.9). Vegetable and fruit forms were associated with inclusion in product name [χ2 (4, N = 1,462) = 206.6, P < 0.001]. Juice/juice concentrates were less likely to be included in names (32.4%; SR = −5.4). Conclusions and Implications: Substantial discrepancies exist between ITF ingredient lists and front-of-package product names. When only front-of-package information informs purchases, caregivers may not be purchasing products that facilitate children's building of vegetable preferences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)96-102
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Volume53
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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