Back to Article List

Regulation and labeling of plant-based beverages and simulated meat, poultry, and egg products in Canada and the United States

Oct 30, 2020


Globally, there is a movement toward plant-based diets. At the root of this movement are many different motivators, including concern for animal welfare, concern for the environment and sustainability, and the perceived healthfulness of plant-based compared with animal-based diets. A dilemma in the introduction of innovative plant-based foods is their naming. The names of many common foods (e.g., milk, yogurt, meat) are defined in food standards, which outline the source and compositional requirements for a food to be labeled with the common name. Food standards are regulations, and regulations are technically legally binding and have the force of law, although, of course, they are subject to interpretation. In the United States, food standards have resulted in tremendous contention, both at the state and federal levels. Equally problematic is the composition of plant-based foods, which is largely unregulated in the United States, resulting in a plethora of plantbased foods that differ from each other and from their animal-based counterparts in their nutritional compositions. In Canada, the situation is quite different. Indeed, most plant-based foods are regulated by standards of identity, which define not only the nutritional compositions of the foods, but also their naming. An understanding of the regulatory environment in each country, globally, is fundamental in the development and successful marketing of plant-based foods.

Related Articles
See All News
Subscribe to our newsletter

The best industry insight in your mailbox