Mexican authorities withdraw food products due to non-compliance with labeling requirements NOM 051 | Foley & Lardner LLP


The Mexican Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risks (Cofepris) and the Federal Consumer Prosecutor’s Office (Profeco) removed more than 10,000 units of domestic and imported food products that were on display in supermarkets for non-compliance with front-of-pack food labeling requirements implemented in 2020. More than 80 well-known products were found to be in violation of labeling requirements in accordance with Cofepris, such as chocolates (including powders), biscuits, cereals, syrups, jellies, sauces, flavored milks, snacks, sodas, fish, seafood, seasonings, marmalades and others.

In 2020, new labeling requirements became mandatory for all prepackaged and non-alcoholic food and beverage products sold in Mexico, regardless of country of origin, following changes to the mandatory Mexican standard” NOM-051-SCFI/SSA1-2010, General Labeling Specifications for Foods and Prepackaged Non-Alcoholic Beverages Commercial and Health Information” (NAME 051) published March 27, 2020. Please see Foley’s previous coverage on this by clicking here.

The current requirements include an additional warning system with a stamp placed on the front of the package, in addition to the existing nutrition labeling requirements. This additional labeling aims to prevent the risk of overconsumption of certain ingredients (sodium, added sugars, saturated fats and other nutrients determined by NOM 051) which, when ingested in excess, are considered risk factors associated with diseases. non-communicable chronicles. , such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease.

The stamp warning system should be used when prepackaged products (i) contain added free sugars, fats or sodium, and when (ii) the value content of free sugars, saturated fats, trans fats and sodium exceeds the values ​​specified in NOM 051.

When the above qualifiers are present, the pad warning system must be used in accordance with the following labeling (located at the top right of the front cover and dimensions specified):

Excess Calories / Excess Sugar / Excess Saturated Fat / Excess Trans Fat / Excess Sodium

For small packages, the following warning system should be used depending on the number of warning seals applicable to the product:

Additionally, whenever sweeteners and/or caffeine are added in any amount, products must include labeling indicating that they are not recommended for children (sweeteners) or should be avoided by children (caffeine ).

The following prohibitions have also been placed on the further promotion/marketing of products containing one or more of the aforementioned warning seals:

  • They may not contain endorsements by professional associations; and
  • They may not market through consumer-facing characters, designs, celebrities, giveaways, offers, toys or contests, price or content-related offers, visual-spatial games or social media ads.

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