The Brand Name Food List (the List) is a tool that helps British Columbians choose food and beverages that meet the nutrition standards set for schools and public buildings. The List scores food and beverages based on the Guidelines for Food and Beverage Sales in BC Schools (the Guidelines) and the Nutritional Guidelines for Vending Machines in B.C. Public Buildings.

The list is meant for ready-to-eat food and beverages that come with nutrition labelling information and require minimal, if any, preparation (such as reheating or adding water). Prepackaged food and beverages are scored using the nutrition information on the food label. In order for freshly made food or beverages to be eligible for posting to the Brand Name Food List the following conditions must be met:

  1. The food service operator must use standardized recipes (detailed recipes that have been tested many times and produce consistent results).
  2. A nutrient analysis must be completed by either a Registered Dietitian or a company specializing in nutrient analysis.
  3. Product information must be provided in a format that meets Canadian food labelling requirements.

Each item on the List is rated into one of three ‘Sell categories’: Sell Most, Sell Sometimes and Do Not Sell. You can search the List for a specific item, sort the List, and submit new items to be added to the List.

Freshly made food and beverages without nutrition labelling information are scored using the Checklist tool contained within the Guidelines.

The Brand Name Food List makes it easier to create a healthy food environment in BC schools and Public Buildings. Did you know that the package size affects how much you eat or drink? Or that when a food is near you that you eat more of it – whether it’s jelly beans or carrot sticks? If we surround ourselves with Sell Most and Sell Sometimes choices we’ll all eat better!

Healthy eating emphasizes fresh and minimally processed food. When prepackaged foods are used, the List makes it easier to create a healthy food environment by helping you identify the Sell Most and Sell Sometimes options. For more about healthy eating, check out ‘Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide’, the food and activity tracker available from Dietitians of Canada, or British Columbians can call Dietitian Services at HealthLinkBC at 8-1-1 for family, school, and workplace tips for healthy eating.

Switching to healthier food is a great start. Partner eating well with increasing your physical activity and you are on the path to better health. Check our HealthLinkBC or HealthyFamiliesBC websites for ideas.