The comprehension and use of UK nutrition signpost labelling schemes


A team based in the Food, Consumer Behaviour and Health Research Centre are working with BMRB on a project for the Food Standards Agency to evaluate the impact of front-of-pack nutrition signpost labelling schemes on consumer purchasing behaviour and knowledge. The research focuses on a comparative analysis of the three main labelling approaches currently being used in the UK.

These are: 

  • monochrome schemes that provide information on the percentage of guideline daily amount (GDA)
  • the traffic light colour-coded schemes that indicate nutrient levels
  • schemes that provide a traffic light colour code and percentage of GDA

The main goal is to establish which scheme(s), or elements of the scheme(s), best enable consumers to make informed choices about the foods they purchase. 


Malam S, Clegg S, Kirwan S, McGinigal S, Raats M, Shepherd R, Barnett J, Senior V, Hodgkins C, Dean M (2009) Comprehension and use of UK nutrition signpost labelling schemes. London: Food Standards Agency.

BMRB Social Research & University of Surrey (2008) Comprehension and use of UK nutrition signpost labelling schemes: Scientific Rationale and Design. London: Food Standards Agency.



Food Standards Agency