The Health Star Rating system is a voluntary, ‘star image’ labelling system that is intended to ‘provide at-a-glance convenient nutritional information to help consumers make informed and healthier food choices that can lead to better health’. Under the Health Star Rating system, packaged foods are given a star rating between ½ star and 5 stars, based on their nutritional profile. It is based on a calculation per 100 g or 100 mL of a product or per pack, if the product is a single serve.
- Energy (kilojoules);
- Risk nutrients, which are associated with an increased risk of chronic disease (e.g.: saturated fat, sodium [salt] and sugars);
- Positive nutrients, which offer positive health benefits (e.g.: dietary fibre, protein and the proportion of fruit, vegetable, nut and legume content).
Health Star Ratings for products within a food category can vary significantly, depending on the individual nutrient profile of each product. The more stars you see (up to 5 stars), the healthier the food option, compared to a similar product with fewer stars. That is, the Health Star Rating system helps people to compare like foods with other like foods.