What is the Health Star Rating System?

The Health Star Rating system was developed to help make informed decisions on nutrition information when purchasing packaged foods.  The rating helps compare between foods in the same category and make healthier choices.

Where did the Health Star Rating System come from?

The Health Star rating system is an initiative led by the Australian and New Zealand governments. The System was developed in collaboration with industry, public health and consumer groups. It was introduced in 2014 on a voluntary basis. The system is being formally reviewed in 2019.

How does the Health Star Rating System work?

Products are given a rating of 0.5 to 5 stars. The more stars, the healthier the choice within that category. Health Star ratings can appear on packs in two ways as shown below; either just the star rating, or star rating with specific nutrition content - some or all of the nutrients below may appear.

The star rating is calculated based on a combination of the energy and nutrients per 100g. Some risk nutrients such as saturated fat, sodium (salt) and sugars lower the score. Positive nutrients include dietary fibre, protein and proportion of fruit, vegetable, nut and legume content improve the score.

How do I use it?

When you’re at the supermarket you can use the health star rating to compare food in the same category, e.g. plain yoghurt with strawberry yoghurt. It is not designed to compare different types of products e.g. yoghurt versus milk.

Fonterra’s commitment to nutrition

Fonterra is committed to being the world’s most trusted source of dairy nutrition. We know that by providing access to good nutrition with clear labelling this can help Kiwis make informed decisions. Aligned with this Fonterra Brands New Zealand have signed up to the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Healthy Kids’ Industry pledge which aims to help reduce rates of obesity in Kiwi children. In addition to this we have committed to seven additional pledges. Two of these are: to roll out the Health Star Rating on applicable products* as we refresh our packaging; and by the end of 2018, include Health Star Rating information on our websites for all products. For more information on Fonterra’s commitment to the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Healthy Kid Industry pledge please click here.

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* ‘Applicable products’ are those intended for everyday consumption in New Zealand and where the packaging is not also used for export to regions where the health star rating is not accepted