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Where do I find nutritional info for raw and common foods. I need info for proper nutrition labeling.

As part of the Agricultural Research Service section of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), a public national nutrient database has been established listing nutrient information for many common raw and processed foods.  The National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference (or “SR19” for short) can be found at the following link:  http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/.   While this database is a wealth of information and a great resource for people interested in very detailed, specific nutrient information—such as dietitians, researchers, etc., it may be a little confusing or overwhelming for the general public.  Still, it is a credible resource for this type of information that is available to all.

It appears that your interest in nutrient information is for nutrition labeling.  Please be aware that if you are developing a food product—as a food manufacturer, you are bound by Federal laws governing food products under the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) jurisdiction.  FDA is responsible for assuring that foods sold in the United States are safe, wholesome and properly labeled. 

The Nutrition Labeling and Education Act (NLEA) requires most foods to bear nutrition labeling and requires food labels that bear nutrient content claims and certain health messages to comply with specific requirements.  Regulations pertaining to food labeling are published in the Federal Register prior to their effective date and compiled annually in Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Also be aware that FDA assigns the manufacturer the responsibility for assuring the validity of a product label’s stated nutrient values.  While the source of the data used to calculate nutrition label values is the prerogative of the manufacturer, FDA has very specific recommendations for the process.  A publication entitled, Guidance for Industry: FDA Nutrition Labeling Manual – A Guide for Developing and Using Data Bases, would be advised reading if you are embarking on food product manufacturing or distribution.

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