The Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) recently conducted a field survey of bakeries and confectionery outlets to verify that they are correctly displaying the number of calories in their products, along with use-by dates and storage requirements.
According to the survey, around 70 percent of bakeries and patisseries in Riyadh and Qussaim are displaying the ingredients and calorie content of food and beverages properly.
The most notable violations included miscalculating calorie content; not displaying calorie content on all menus; not displaying the calorie content of each item on the menu; not specifying calories separately for each method of preparation; and not including the required phrase: “Adults need an average of 2,000 calories daily. Requirements may vary.”
Any facility selling food is required by regulations to display a list of the calorie content of the items it is selling. The regulations stipulate that calorie content should be clearly and permanently displayed next to each food item or beverage — including side dishes, soft drinks and desserts — on the menu, and on all menus, including electronic screens. They also stipulate that dishes which are prepared in different ways — for example, chicken that is grilled, fried, or roasted in herbs — must specify the calorie content for each method of preparation.