A Randomized Controlled Trial Evaluating the Relative Effectiveness of the Multiple Traffic Light and Nutri-Score Front of Package Nutrition Labels.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The objective of this trial was to test two promising front-of-pack nutrition labels, 1) the United Kingdom's Multiple Traffic Lights (MTL) label and 2) France's Nutri-Score (NS), relative to a no-label control. We hypothesized that both labels would improve diet quality but NS would be more effective due to its greater simplicity. We tested this hypothesis via an online grocery store using a 3 × 3 crossover (within-person) design with 154 participants. Outcomes assessed via within person regression models include a modified Alternative Healthy Eating Index (AHEI)-2010 (primary), average Nutri-Score, calories purchased, and singular measures of diet quality of purchase orders. Results show that both labels significantly improve modified AHEI scores relative to Control but neither is statistically superior using this measure. NS performed statistically better than MTL and Control based on average Nutri-Score, yet, unlike MTL it did not statistically reduce calories or sugar from beverages. This suggest that NS may be preferred if the goal is to improve overall diet quality but, because calories are clearly displayed on the label, MTL may perform better if the goal is to reduce total energy intake.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Finkelstein, EA; Ang, FJL; Doble, B; Wong, WHM; van Dam, RM

Published Date

  • September 17, 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 11 / 9

PubMed ID

  • 31533256

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC6770629

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2072-6643

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2072-6643

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.3390/nu11092236


  • eng