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Unhealthy diet is now the leading risk factor for chronic disease and premature death in Canada. Mandatory nutrition labels on pre-packaged goods were introduced in Canada in 2005; however, consumers have difficulty using information on these labels. Recognizing the need to address the shortcomings of existing nutrition labels, jurisdictions outside of Canada have initiated standardized nutrition rating systems located on the front of food packages or on retail shelf tags. The goal of these tools is to increase the proportion of consumers who notice, understand, and use nutrition information to make healthier food choices. “Guiding Stars” is a nutrition rating system that provides simple standardized nutrition ratings from zero to three stars on shelf tags for all products in a supermarket - the more stars displayed on the shelf tag the higher the nutritional value of the product. In this presentation, Dr. Hobin will provide an overview of this research, which examines if this system contributes to consumers purchasing more nutritious foods in supermarkets in Ontario and provide evidence to inform nutrition labelling practices and regulations in Canada.
Presenter: Dr. Erin Hobin
Dr. Erin Hobin (PhD) is a Scientist in Heath Promotion, Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention at Public Health Ontario with a status-only appointment at the University of Toronto and University of Waterloo. Her research focuses on developing and evaluating population level interventions for chronic disease prevention, specifically in the areas of healthy weights, healthy eating, physical activity, and alcohol control. The primary purpose of Dr. Hobin's work is to impact decisions and to produce solution-oriented research by generating evidence to inform interventions for chronic disease prevention.
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