'Whole Grain' Lawsuit Hits at Truth About Health Food

Food industry accused of labeling products with only a grain of truth
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 23, 2008 11:05 AM CDT
'Whole Grain' Lawsuit Hits at Truth About Health Food
A shopper passes shelves of Sara Lee bread at a Chicago market. Food company Sara Lee Corp. yesterday agreed to clarify its labels on use of whole grains in its bread.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, file)

The food industry is coming under pressure to start telling the whole truth about whole grain products, BusinessWeek reports. Sara Lee, facing a lawsuit from a consumer advocacy group, has agreed to change the labels on its Soft & Smooth bread to reflect that it's made from just 30% whole grains, with refined white flour making up the rest.

Studies showing the health benefits of whole bread have boosted consumer demand, and the food industry has been quick to bring out products and trumpet their "whole grain goodness." Critics charge they are making big claims for small changes. "The food industry's term 'made with whole grain' is actually code for made with very little or some whole grain," complained a consumer advocate. (More whole grains stories.)

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