Victoria Fine Foods, a New York-based pasta sauce manufacturer, recently redesigned the labels affixed to its jars. The sauce labels now put the list of all-natural ingredients on the packaging front, rather than the side or back placement typical to the category.
Don Davide, chief strategy officer of Victoria Fine Foods, told FoodProductionDaily the front-facing ingredients list is a first for US pasta sauce producers.
“It’s not just a location, it’s a philosophy,” he said. “We are committed to using only fresh ingredients and the most authentic slow kettle-cooking process for a true homemade taste; by announcing this on the front of our label, our package allows consumers to make an informed decision about what they are feeding their families.”
Victoria Fine Foods conducted consumer research, checking in with primary shoppers and meal preparers. People polled indicated placing ingredients on the label front left them with a positive impression, brought home the lack of preservatives, and simplified shopping.
According to the company, the up-front ingredients is a literal representation of its motto, “Ingredients Come First.” The processing method uses home-style cooking methods, scaled up to production levels; the sauces use whole tomatoes (rather than reconstituted paste or dried tomatoes) and fresh spices.
While Victoria Fine Foods may be the first pasta sauce maker to enumerate its ingredients on the label front, it is following a general trend to put information about food on the front of a package.
Facts Up Front is a voluntary drive backed by the Food Marketing Institute and Grocery Manufacturers Association, putting key nutrition information on the front of food packaging. In 2008, confectionery giant Mars stepped forward and announced plans to place nutrition information on the front of packaging for its candy brands (including M&Ms, Snickers, and others).