Food labelling guidelines to change in 2014

12th December 2011 - Fine Cut

Retailers will not need to comply with new European Union (EU) labelling guidelines until 2014, according to the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

The Yorkshire Post reported a spokesperson for the organisation as saying that the reason for the delay is so that businesses have plenty of time to organise changes to printed labels and other packaging.

Consumers can expect to see a greater quantity of nutritional information featured on items, although retailers will not be compelled by law to include such figures until 2016.

Most fresh and frozen meat will need to display its country of origin, with the FSA representative explaining: "For example, it will be possible for Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland to be used on food labels without mentioning UK under new provenance rules. Also, the origin of main ingredients will have to be given if different from where the final product is made."

According to, a key reason for this change is to stop companies being able to claim a product is British, when it has been packed or processed in the country, but not grown or reared there.

The EU regulation will make it mandatory for high-caffeine drinks to contain a warning sign that reminds consumers that such products are not recommended for children or women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

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