Healthy Living

U.S. Beer Brands Are Adding Nutrition Labels, So We'll Know What's Inside Our Brew

It's one big step forward.

Ever wondered how many calories are in your beer can? Soon, you’ll know right away.

Some of the country’s biggest beer brands including Budweiser, Coors and Heineken and have agreed to start labeling their beers with nutrition facts, the Beer Institute trade group announced Tuesday.

The new labels will include calories, carbohydrates, protein, fat and alcohol by volume. Brands will also publish an ingredients list and freshness date either on their packaging or online.

Calorie-counting is not the only goal of a healthy lifestyle, but easy-to-read labels on food and drinks can only help people make choices for better health. It’s about time the labels came to beer, says Michael Jacobson, president of the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

“Alcohol can be a major source of calories for many Americans, and the absence of calorie labeling on cans and bottles has helped obscure that,” Jacobson said in a press release. “Brewers are allowed to artificially color, flavor, sweeten, and preserve their products... If the industry takes pride in its ingredients it should list them on labels.”

Beer is certainly not a health food, and it should be consumed in moderation. Alcohol consumption should be limited to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As some beer cans may be bigger than a standard drink, the new labels could help Americans better follow these guidelines.

Of course, some beer brands already include calorie counts on their cans. But the new round of labels will up that number to more than 80 percent of all beer sold in the U.S., Bloomberg estimates. Companies should have their new labels in place by the end of 2020.

Cheers to that!

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