Posted on 1st December 2013 by biocheckuk.
The current legislative framework for food labelling in Europe will change considerably in one year’s time. The new Food Information to Consumers Regulation (FIR), EU 1169/2011, becomes effective on 13th December 2014 (except changes to nutrition information on processed foods, which come two years later). It expands the provision of food information to consumers by business operators at all stages of the food chain (see Article 1) e.g. with allergen information for non-prepacked foods including those sold in restaurants and cafes (Article 44) and over the internet (Article 14). It combines two existing Directives (2000/13/EC and 90/496/EEC) into one legislation and also includes changes on origin labelling of fresh meats from pig, sheep, goat and poultry.
Changes to allergen information include highlighting allergens in the ingredients list (Article 9 and 21) and better legibility (Articles 12 & 13) with defined font sizes e.g. a 1.2 mm or greater font size (Annex IV) for packages with a surface area of >80cm2. In the 46 pages of provisions, Annex II lists the 14 food allergens and their exemptions. Warnings about potential cross contamination of these food allergens will continue to be allowed at present on prepacked foods, though allergy advice with ‘contains’ statements will not be permitted in order to avoid repetition of mandatory information. Whilst legal advice should be sought for final interpretation of the provisions, Bio-Check can help companies. Next year, it will host an event to explain more about FIR and discuss Allergen Thresholds. Furthermore, Bio-Check can prepare/review a company’s Food Allergen Management systems through their auditing & consultancy services.
Posted in Allergens