KIND Wins 'Healthy' Food Fight With FDA

KIND Healthy Snacks, the maker of nut and grain snack bars, settled a year-long dispute with the Food and Drug Administration over the company’s use of the word “healthy” to describe its snacks.

“There is a provision on our regulations that are over 25 years old that defines the word healthy.  And anything that has fat, even if it is healthy fats that we now have learned are really good for you like polyunsaturated, monounsaturated fats in almonds or salmon,” Kind CEO Daniel Lubetzky told the FOX Business Network’s Stuart Varney.

Lubetzky said it was the almonds in the company’s bars that lead to the issue with the FDA.

“The No. 1  ingredient in all our bars is almonds and we didn’t even promote it, it was just on the back of our wrappers. We mention that our philosophy is to think with healthy and tasty, socially impactful and economically sustainable, wholesome and convenient.  And the FDA has now come around,” Lubetzky said.

Yet Lubetzky says other foods that are high in carbohydrates and sugar are acceptable under the FDA regulations.

“More importantly the regulation itself doesn’t really make sense because under the current regulation, you can have something with empty calories, just made of carbs like a toasted pastry or a rich children’s sugary cereal and that can be deemed healthy under the reg,” Lubetzky said.

According to the KIND CEO there needs to be a shift in how people view food.

“I think the problem is we’re obsessing about macro nutrients rather than about real food and just focusing on good celebrated food,” he said.

Lubetzky views industry self-regulation as the solution because government regulations are slow to keep up with changing science.

“The important thing is that the consumers and the industry self-regulated, and the media regulate, if you see something that’s not ethical or correct that the market polices it,” he said.