There are many instances of design that are part of our everyday lives but dont wind up in Communication Arts or win Webbys. The Nutrition Facts label is a beautiful piece of information design that millions of people see every day but most dont give a second thought.
Prior to 1990, there were no standards for displaying nutrition information on food packaging. That year, Congress passed a law requiring the FDA to develop a new, universal label. It had to convey complex information in a manner that anyone could understand, it had to be devoid of any color or complex graphics to withstand poor quality printing and it had to be as small as possible to accommodate the demands of food manufacturers who did not want to relinquish valuable label real estate.