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Connecticut official investigates Smart Choices food program

October 16, 2009 | 10:55 am

Shopping


The Connecticut attorney general is investigating the Smart Choices food labeling program, the Hartford Courant reports today.

"We want to know if there's any objective research or scientific basis that justifies telling the public that these sugar-laden foods are smart choices. What's so smart about Froot Loops?" the paper quotes the attorney general, Richard Blumenthal, as saying.

The Smart Choices program, officials say, intends to help consumers make "better for you" choices at the supermarket by marking packages that meet certain criteria with a check mark. The idea also is to replace competing health labels with one plan to ease the confusion for shoppers.

But critics of the program began complaining as soon as it started over the summer, saying that Smart Choices was more marketing than anything else, in part because products such as Lucky Charms and Froot Loops made the grade -- as well as rice and vegetables.

The program was developed by a group of nutrition scientists, industry representatives and academics.

-- Mary MacVean

Photo: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times

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