*Squint* Label reading.... am I right? We only have so much time in the day, no more standing in the aisle making sure you didn’t miss anything important on that baby food label. Keep on reading as we break down Ages versus Stages, and what we’re doing to simplify your shopping experience.

a woman squints confusedly at the back of a packaged

What age recommendations are based on

The standard age recommendations are based primarily on consistency, ranging from thin purees to finger foods. Another factor to consider is the complexity of the flavors—babies new to solids can benefit from trying new foods one or two ingredients at a time, and this strategy can also help flag potential allergic reactions. You’ll notice that most of our pouches for 6+ months usually include 3-4 ingredients.

a child looks confusedly at the camera

Basic stages to ages conversion

Stage 1 is for 4-6 months. It typically has one ingredient with a light consistency.

Stage 2 is for 6-8 months. These foods include a few ingredients, and the consistency gets a little thicker.

Stage 3 is for 9-12 months. These foods include blended purees and softer finger foods.

Stage 4 (AKA Toddler) is for 12 months and up. Your toddler will be a self-feeding pro with Sprout Organics snacks like Wafflez and Curlz. Plus, they’re ready to practice using utensils with tasty options like our Butternut Mac n Cheese and the Burrito Bowl.

the old sprout organics pouch design and the new pouch design

Why we’re moving to ages, not stages

No more trying to remember exactly which months “Stage 2” is, we’re just coming out and saying it with simple verbiage like “6+ months.” Unless you are a seasoned pro at label reading, it’s easy to get a little overwhelmed when surveying the baby food aisle for the best options. This is why we’ve started to transition our packaging to be simpler, and this transition includes us simplifying the age guidance we provide.

crinklez snack package with zoom ins of age, texture bars, and description

How is our packaging changing?

On our pouches, we’re keeping it super simple. We’ll provide age guidance on the front or just above the nutrition panel.

With our snacks, we’re providing more detail due to the varying ranges of texture, flavor complexity, and sizes of each snack. On the back of our snacks, there are two sliding scales that dictate the level of flavor (simple to complex) and texture (chewy to crispy). You will also find some more information about standard cues that may indicate your child is ready to try a certain snack based on average development, like “starts to stand and walk alone” and “feeds self easily with fingers.”

We are working hard to transition all our foods to consistent, new packaging. In the meantime, packaging may vary on shelves and in your online orders. On packaging both new and old, you can always find guidance on our labels.

parents and child sit smiling and enjoying sprout organics pouches

Image by @askyourotherdad

You know best

What it really comes down to is that you know your little one the best. Every kiddo develops at different speeds, we are just here to offer (hopefully helpful) guidance to take out some of the guesswork. Always monitor your child closely when trying new foods and consult your pediatrician for advice.

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