Percentage Daily Intake
Information on food labels can be confusing, but when you know how to read them, labels can provide you with a tool to make nutritious choices.
To help consumers make more informed dietary choices some foods found in the supermarket have nutrition information on the front of the packaging that looks like a thumbnail. These are called %DI or Percentage Daily Intake. This nutrition information is not mandatory and is added to many of our food labels in addition to the nutrition information panel.
What is %DI?
Percentage Daily Intake is a simple way of showing how much energy and nutrients a product contributes to a person’s daily intake. It shows the percentage per serve of the daily intake for energy and nutrients such as carbohydrate, sugar, protein, fat, saturated fat, sodium and fibre.
The %DI values are based on the amount of energy and nutrients an average adult requires for a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle. The %DI is recommended for use as a guide for consumers to become aware of how a food product can contribute to a balanced diet.
The Food Standards Code states that the 'average adult' requires 8700kJ per day1 and is based on the average energy requirements of a physically active man and woman of healthy weight, average height and average age for the Australian population. The nutrient values are also prescribed in the Food Standards Code and are calculated using the average adult energy requirement of 8700kJ.
It is important to note that individual daily intakes of nutrients may be higher or lower, based on many factors including - gender, age, level of daily physical activity, pregnancy and weight. The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) has an online calculator which can be used to provide an estimate of your daily energy requirements.
What are the %DI values?
The %DI values below can be found in The Food Standards Code which is governed by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ)1. To find out more about specific nutrients click on the table below.
1. Food Standards Australia New Zealand, Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code. 2006, Food Liaison Pty Ltd.