Available Display Surface (ADS)
Elements Not Included as Part of the Available Display Surface
Note: The many examples of prepackaged products included in this section are there for the purposes of determining the ADS only.
|Package Area||Include in ADS||Exclude from ADS|
|Areas Destroyed upon Opening - e.g., tamper seals, tear strips||
|Bag Closures - Zip Lock, Cut Line, Heat Seal||
|Gathered ends of packaging material||
|Labelling information on non-ADS surfaces (e.g. top of tin can)||
|Lids on jars and tubs||
|Paper Labels on Inside of Clear Packages||
|Ridges in Packaging Material||
|Very small areas of continuous surface (≤ 12 cm2)||
|Windows and Transparent Packaging||
Areas Destroyed Upon Opening
Any part of the package that is destroyed upon opening (e.g., a tear strip, a band straddling a bottle cap and bottle neck, a single label made up of several lids on a multi-pack of individual yogurt-type containers where each unit is snapped off, destroying the Nutrition Facts table, etc.) is not considered part of the ADS, unless the product is in a non-reusable container or single-serving package (i.e., the entire contents can be reasonably expected to be eaten by one person during a single eating occasion).
Bag closures such as zip locks, cut lines, or heat seals and the area past these closures (i.e., area often cut off when opening the package) are not considered ADS.
Acute curves on rigid packaging are not considered ADS.
- Note: gently sloping curves that may support a label or printed information (if printing appears directly on the package), are considered ADS.
Certain packaging processes use an electronic eye to cut packaging material to the correct length. An "eye spot", usually a dark oblong spot, is printed onto the continuous film of labelling material to trigger the cutting process. On the final package the eye spot is usually present on the seams. The area that incorporates the width of the eye spot and whole length of package is not considered ADS, unless the area is already labeled.
Gabled ends of packaging, such as those found on milk cartons and on cookie bags, are not considered ADS unless label information (mandatory or non-mandatory) appears in these areas.
- Note: Public service information (e.g., Kids Help Phone), recycle information, opening instructions, or coding would not cause this area to be considered ADS.
Gathered Ends of Packaging Material
Packaging material that is gathered, making any written material impossible to read (e.g. the end of a bread bag, gathered ends of a tube of cookie dough or gathered ends of a prepackaged tube of ground beef) is not considered ADS.
If this area is covered by a flat sticker, then the whole area is considered ADS. Note that ADS includes the whole area, even if the sticker is small. Examples include the end of a roll of biscuits or cookies and the back of a round of cheese packaged in a paper overwrap.
- The NFt should not be placed in gathered areas where printing is not legible at time of sale.
Labelling Information on Non-ADS Surfaces
This may include areas of the package where a label cannot be physically applied or where information cannot be legibly set out or viewed or the bottom of a package if the product would be damaged or leak if turned upside down to view the NFt. However, if labelling information exists on these surfaces (other than the UPC code or coding information, public service announcements (e.g., Kids Phone), recycle instructions, or opening instructions), then these areas become ADS.
For example, normally the bottom of a pie container is not considered to be part of the ADS. However, if an NFt is placed on the bottom of the container, the entire bottom of the product becomes ADS.
Lids on Jars and Tubs
Lids are generally considered ADS. However, raised areas and ridges that interfere with labelling are excluded from ADS. Sides less than 10 mm wide, sides with spirals or grooves, and very small lids are also excluded if no print information is in this area. In some cases, very small caps of bottles are considered very small areas of continuous surface and, consequently, not ADS.
Paper Labels on the Inside of Clear Packages
When paper labels are on the inside of a clear packaging material, then the ADS includes the area occupied by the paper label, as well as the rest of the same label panel that is not occupied by the paper label. There is no consideration for minor ridges and uneven surfacing of these panels. Other panels that do not have inner paper labels are calculated as though they did have an inner paper label.
For example, in the case of a clear plastic egg carton with a paper label on the inside of the top of the carton, the entire top and sides of the lid are considered ADS. However, since it would be almost impossible to place an inner paper label in the bottom cups, the bottom half of the egg carton is not considered ADS.
Ridges in Packaging Material
Ridges in the packaging that make it impossible to affix a label or to print on the ridged sections are not considered ADS.
- Note: In some cases, closely repeated ridging will support a paper label and in some processes, the printing takes place before the ridges are formed. In these cases, these areas are considered ADS.
Usually the UPC (Universal Product Code or bar code) symbol is not considered ADS and must not be included in the calculations for the ADS [B.01.001(1), FDR]. However, if the UPC is present on the label more than once, the area occupied by the additional UPCs would be included in the ADS calculation.
Since the UPC code is a machine-readable bar code, the definition between lines must be significant enough for the machine to register. As a result, the size of the UPC code may vary depending on the precision of the printing process. Some printing processes and packaging materials cause ink to spread. Consequently, on some packaging the UPC code may be 200 % larger, or more, than the standard size.
When the UPC is enclosed in a box, the entire box is excluded from ADS. When the UPC is not enclosed in a box, only the area covered by the actual UPC is deducted from the ADS. The area of the UPC includes the outer characters.
Very Small Areas of "Continuous Surface"
Any "continuous surface (definition)" of 12 cm2 or less (e.g., bottle caps, lids, folded triangles on package surfaces) which is too small to accommodate even the smallest available Nutrition Facts table is not included in the ADS, provided that this continuous surface does not already have printed mandatory, optional or promotional labelling on it.
Windows and Transparent Packaging
Flexible or rigid transparent packaging materials, such as those found on bacon packages or covering windows in pie and candy boxes, are considered ADS. However, if the window is open with no inner covering, then the empty window is not considered ADS.
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