Consultation on food allergen labelling

19th July 2019

The Government launched a consultation in January 2019 to address the absence of a legal requirement to label food made and pre-packed on the premises with details of allergens.

It invited comments on four options: full ingredient labelling, allergen-only labelling, ‘ask the staff’ labels on products and ‘promoting best practice’ to food business operators.

On 25 June 2019 the Government announced that it will implement new legislation to ensure food business operators (‘FBO’s) include full ingredients labelling on pre-packaged food, including where it is prepared on the premises for direct sale. This was the overwhelmingly favoured option in the consultation and the strongest of the four that were considered, with 70% of individuals preferring it.

Under current rules, food prepared on the premises in which it is sold is not required to display allergen information in writing, and information on allergens can be given in person by the FBO if requested by the consumer. That will change in 2021 but there will be a two-year period for FBOs to make the necessary changes.

When the draft legislation is published we will add further commentary on how FBOs can use the two years before implementation to find the most efficient and effective way of complying with the legislation, creating policies that protect the consumer and address any potential risk of mislabelling.

For more information, please contact food safety lawyers David Young or Claire Watson or visit our website

Consultation on food allergen labelling

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