Spar is putting Guideline Daily Amounts (GDA) information across all its own label packaging ahead of a Food Standards Agency (FSA) decision on nutritional labelling.

The food watchdog wants to bring in a traffic light scheme which will show at a glance if food has high, medium or low levels of fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt.

However, some of the biggest food manufacturers including Kraft, Danone, Nestlé and PepsiCo are in favour of a rival scheme based on supplying GDA information.

Tesco introduced GDA labelling to its food products nine months ago, saying it believes shoppers find such labelling easier to understand.

Spar group trading director Peter Miller said it was important to communicate nutritional messages to shoppers.

“We’re not convinced that the FSA approach is the best solution. We have started with labelling prepared meals and by the end of the year all own label food and drink products will be labelled.”

He added: “We could spend a lot of time, energy and cost in adopting the GDA labelling system only to be told traffic lights are mandatory, but we’ll have to cross that bridge when we come to it.”
Retailers and suppliers were given a 12-week consultation period on the traffic light system and the FSA will announce its decision in March.