The consumption of food supplements has increased considerably, especially whey protein. Since many users make their choices through the product label, it is important that this information may be transparent for good understanding. For this, there are responsible actors for overseeing whether the information is in accordance with the standard and thus offering safe and quality products to consumers. This study aimed to evaluate the labelling adequacy of whey protein food supplements sold in Fortaleza, in the state of Ceará/BR. A checklist based on Collegiate Board Resolution number 243/2018 was applied to 51 supplement labels, obtained from five stores specializing in nutritional products, thus excluding products with manufacturing data prior to July 2018 and with a foreign language without translation. The identifying labels were obtained from 29 different brands, 25 (92%) of which were domestically manufactured and four (8%) were imported. Non-conformities were found in the layout related parameters and the characters appearance with respect to the product designation, such as background color contrast in the label, designation readability, location of the product designation, boldface designation and designation complemented with the nutrition font from which it was extracted and the method of use. In addition, many filtered products did not contain information about conservation after opening the package. Regarding the product designation “food supplement”, only two (4%) products were suitable. The findings of this study showed that the labelling adequacy of whey protein supplements was not adequate to current legislation and that the industry will take time to adapt its labels to the new resolutions.
According to Brazilian and Mercosur legislation, food labeling is mandatory for all ready-for-sale foods packaged in the absence of the consumer. Labels must contain descriptive information on packaged foods and beverages, including the ingredients list and nutrition labeling ). The nutrition facts label must contain quantitative descriptions of energy value, carbohydrates, proteins, total fat, saturated fat, TFA, and sodium. Although TFA information is mandatory, current legislation has limitations that make it difficult for consumers to correctly identify TFA in food products by using food labels (. One such example is the possibility for manufacturers to declare a TFA content of 0 g in the nutrition facts label when the product contains less than or equal to 0.2 g of TFA per serving, without any distinction between naturally occurring TFA and i-TFA.