Model Nutrition Standards for Checkout

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Nutrition standards for foods and beverages at checkout can improve access to healthier selections and reduce marking and purchases of unhealthy options.

Adapted from the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity’s Model Beverage and Food Vending Machine Standards with input from members of the Food Marketing Workgroup’s Healthy Checkout Subcommittee

Nutrition standards for foods and beverages at checkout can improve access to healthier selections and reduce marking and purchases of unhealthy options.

These nutrition standards for checkout are based on vending standards that the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity (NANA) developed to provide as a model for municipal, state, and federal government leased or operated vending machines or vending machines on public property. They are similar, though not identical, to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Smart Snacks guidelines for schools.


Products

Click here to download a list of snacks, beverages, and entreés that meet the Model Nutrition Standards for Checkout


Nutrition Standards

Beverage Standards:

  • 100% of beverages must be one or a combination of the following:​
    • Water, including carbonated water (no added caloric sweeteners);​​
    • Coffee or tea with no added caloric sweeteners (if condiments are provided, sugars and sugar substitutes may be provided and milk/creamer products, such as whole or 2% milk, that have less fat than cream);
    • Fat-free or 1% low-fat dairy milk or calcium- and vitamin-D-fortified soymilk with less than 200 calories per container;
    • 100% fruit juice or fruit juice combined with water or carbonated water (limited to a maximum of 12-ounce container; no added caloric sweeteners);
    • 100% vegetable juice (limited to a maximum of 12-ounce container, no added caloric sweeteners, and ≤ 200 milligrams of sodium per container); and
    • Low-calorie beverages that are ≤ 40 calories per container.​​

Food Standards:

Provide an assortment of healthier food choices with more fruits and vegetables, and foods with lower amounts of saturated and trans fats, added sugars, and sodium.

  • 100% of snack foods (and side dishes) must meet all of the following criteria:
    • ​No more than 200 calories per item as offered (per package).
    • No more than 35% calories from fat (which would be no more than 7 grams of fat for a 200 calorie snack, for example) with the exception of packages that 2 contain 100% nuts or seeds; snack mixes that contain components other than nuts and seeds must have no more than 35% of calories from fat; 
    • No more than 10% calories from saturated fat (which would be no more than 2 grams of saturated fat for a 200 calorie snack, for example) with the exception of packages that contain 100% nuts or seeds; snack mixes that contain components other than nuts and seeds must have no more than 10% of calories from saturated fat;
    • 0 grams trans fat;
    • No more than 35% of calories from total sugars and a maximum of no more than 10 grams of total sugars in the product, with the exception of fruits and vegetables that do not contain added sweeteners or fats; and with the exception of yogurt that contains no more than 30 grams of total sugars per 8-ounce container (and adjust proportionally for smaller containers);
    • No more than 200 mg of sodium per item as offered (per package/container); and
    • Each snack food item must contain at least one of the following:
      • a quarter cup of fruit, non-fried vegetable, or fat-free/low-fat dairy,
      • 1 oz. of nuts or seeds or 1 Tbsp. of nut butter,
      • at least 50% of the grain ingredients are whole grain (determined by the product having whole grain as the first ingredient, from the manufacturer, or if the product has a whole grain claim), or
      • at least 10% of the Daily Value of a naturally occurring nutrient of public health concern (calcium, potassium, vitamin D, or fiber).
      • Sugarless chewing gum can be sold without having to meet the above nutrition standards.
  • 100% of entrée-type foods (e.g., sandwich, pizza, burger) must meet all of the following criteria:
    • No more than 400 calories per item as offered (per package);
    • No more than 35% calories from fat (which would be no more than 15 grams of fat for a 400 calorie item, for example);
    • No more than 10% calories from saturated fat (which would be no more than 4 grams saturated fat for a 400 calorie entrée-type item, for example);
    • 0 grams trans fat;
    • No more than 35% of calories from total sugars and a maximum of no more than 15 grams of total sugars in the item;
    • No more than 480 mg of sodium per item as offered; and
    • Each food item must contain at least two of the following:
  • a quarter cup of fruit, non-fried vegetable, or fat-free/low-fat dairy,
  • 1 oz. of nuts or seeds or 1 Tbsp. of nut butter,
  • at least 50% of the grain ingredients are whole grain (determined by the product having whole grain as the first ingredient, from the manufacturer, or if the product has a whole grain claim), and/or
  • at least 10% of the Daily Value of a naturally occurring nutrient of public health concern (calcium, potassium, vitamin D, or fiber).