The Caribbean, like much of the rest of the world, has experienced a nutritional shift. Diets have changed markedly in recent decades and are now dominated by processed and ultra-processed pre-packaged foods, contributing to an epidemic of obesity and diet-related NCDs. To address this, CARICOM Heads of Government endorsed Front of Package Labelling as one of six priorities on which the Caribbean should advocate with respect to NCDs at its 39th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government, held in Montego Bay, Jamaica in July 2018.
Ministries of Health and National Bureaus of Standard in most Caribbean countries are hosting stakeholder meetings to obtain feedback from consumers for the revision of the (2010) CARICOM Regional Standard for Specification for labelling of pre-packaged foods (CRS 5:2010), as well as a separate standard for nutritional labeling. This new food labelling standard graphically indicates if a product contains high levels of sugar, sodium (salt) or fats. The consultation hosted by the Barbados National Standards Institution (BNSI) saw participation from individual consumers, medical doctors, small business persons and distributors.