Representing the Makers of the World’s Favorite Food, Beverage and Consumer Products

Ten Ways SmartLabel™ Meets Consumer Desires for More Product Details

December 7, 2015

By: Jim Flannery, Senior Executive Vice President, Operations and Industry Collaboration

The innovative SmartLabel™ initiative launched by leading food, beverage, consumer products and retail companies will enable consumers to have easy and instantaneous access to detailed information about thousands of products. It is a transformative initiative that will provide me all the information I want to know about what I am purchasing – at the touch of a finger and when I want to know it.

And as someone who helped create and build SmartLabel™ over the past 18 months, here are 10 reasons why I am such a passionate advocate for it and what it does:.

1. It is the modern way to get information. I don’t know about you but the last time I looked at an encyclopedia was in high school…. And that was over 40 years ago! Today, so much knowledge is available at our fingertips via the internet. I don’t read the TV guide or make travel plans from brochures, I search on the Internet.

2. Detailed information on hundreds of attributes for thousands food, beverage, personal care, household and pet care products. Projections indicate that nearly 30,000 total products will be using SmartLabelTM by the end of 2017. Estimates are that within five years, more than 80 percent of the food, beverage, pet care, personal care and household products that consumers buy will be using SmartLabel™.

3. It gives me access to information I want to know, not what someone else wants to tell me. Much of the stuff on labels is hard for people to understand. It’s nice to know that my product contains Calcium Stearoyl Lactylate…but I want to know what that is and why it’s in my product. Labels contain facts and marketing. I want the ability to explore what I need to know.

4. It is really easy and has more than what’s on a label. Let me ask you a question…do you really read the 3-4 pages that follow a magazine ad for some prescription or over-the-counter drug? I’m not sure who thought that that was a good way to inform consumers but I couldn’t find what I was looking for in that mess if I tried. Print was probably the best way to communicate at the time. Smartlabel™ makes it easy and it is organized the same way no matter what information I’m seeking. I’ve heard people say “this will not work for the elderly because they don’t have smartphones”.  I don’t think that is right. According to PEW research, 90 percent of Americans have cell phones. While only 64 percent of American’s had the “smart” versions in 2014, it is a short function of time before flip-phones all but disappear. Nearly all (97 percent) of 18-49 year olds had cell phones, but 74 percent of those over 65 also do.  My experience, and I’m AARP eligible, is that it is a ton easier to adjust the font on my phone or screen than it is to read the fine print on a label!

5. There are lots of ways to get this information from the Internet. A QR code can be scanned by any smart phone and takes me right to the brand’s SmartLabel™ information. If I don’t have a smart phone, I can get this information with any internet connection, using things like a Google or Yahoo search. If I have no access to the internet I’ll bet the store where I’m shopping does or can access the information. The only way people can’t get the information is if they really don’t try looking.

6. The more information a brand makes available to me, the more I am likely to trust that brand. This first generation tool makes more than 350 attributes available and there are thousands of products getting ready to go to market. Whether I am looking for allergens, a specific ingredient, nutritional information, social compliance programs, usage instructions, or advisories, SmartLabel™ provides that and more!

7. When I want to know, I want to know now. Truth is, I’m probably like you and pretty satisfied with the information available to me. But then I’ll read a blog like this or hear a news story and I’ll search to learn. There is no way to meet all the needs about my thirst for knowledge on a label. SmartLabel™ is real-time information.

8. The information must be truthful and accurate. All information provided by SmartLabel™ is bound by the same accuracy requirements as if it was printed on the label, and is covered by USDA and FDA misbranding authority.

9. Modern and innovative technology that matches how people shop. SmartLabel™ is tailored to how people shop today. According to Deloitte’s 2015 American Pantry Study, 55% of consumers conduct product research online or through mobile applications when shopping for food, beverage and household goods.   Research by Benneson Strategy Group shows that 75 percent of consumers said they would be likely to use SmartLabel™.

10. More than 30 major companies already committed to SmartLabel™. Many of the nation’s leading food, beverage, consumer goods and retail companies will use SmartLabel™ to provide information on products.


Report user misconduct

Filed under: Industry Issues,Labeling

1 Comment »

  1. Smart labels its the future and the future is now!

    Great Topic.

    Sarah Packer
    Diretor at Hotstamp

    Comment by Hotstamp — June 4, 2016 @ 12:21 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment