Nutrition Labelling

Closed 2 Jan 2017

Opened 18 Nov 2016

Overview

A few years ago, Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers (FIC) brought together EU rules on general food labelling and nutrition labelling into one piece of legislation. The Food Information (Scotland) Regulations 2014 revoked most of the old Food Labelling Regulations 1996 (as amended) and enable local authorities in Scotland to enforce the requirements of FIC. The majority of the requirements of the new legislation came into force on 13 December 2014 with back of pack nutrition labelling becoming mandatory on most prepacked foods from 13 December 2016.

Technical Guidance is available to help businesses meet the nutrition labelling requirements of FIC.[1]  A Q&A Guidance document has also been produced by Food Standards Scotland and the Food Standards Agency to help with interpretation of the nutrition declaration requirements which has been attached below for your interest.

Prepacked foodstuffs which are exempt from the mandatory nutrition declaration are listed in Annex V of FIC, which I have copied at the end of this letter for convenience. Exemptions relate mainly to minimally processed foods and those with little nutritional value.

An exemption is also permitted for food, including handcrafted food, directly supplied by the manufacturer of small quantities of products to the final consumer or to local retail establishments directly supplying the final consumer.

The European Commission did not give any guidance on the meaning of this exemption and it was left to Member States to provide their own interpretation. Following consultation with enforcement authorities and key stakeholders, Food Standards Scotland has adopted the following interpretations:

  • Manufacturer of small quantities: a micro business under the EU and UK definition i.e. less than 10 employees and a turnover/balance sheet total of less than € 2 M (or Sterling equivalent).
  • Local: Sales within the supplying establishment’s own local authority area plus the greater of either:
    1. the neighbouring local authority area(s) or,
    2. 30 miles/50 kilometres from the boundary of the supplying establishment’s local authority area.[2]

How the exemption works

Food from manufacturers meeting the definition of a micro business, supplied directly to the consumer (including internet or other forms of distance sales), need not display nutrition labelling under this exemption.

Food from micro businesses supplied to the consumer via a third party, if this third party is a local retail establishment[3] supplying directly to the consumer, need not display nutrition labelling under this exemption.

If prepacked foods which rely on this exemption are traded across national borders, you will need to check the interpretation in the recipient country.

 

ANNEX V

Foods Which Are Exempted From The Requirement Of The Mandatory Nutrition Declaration

  1. Unprocessed products that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients;
  2. Processed products which the only processing they have been subjected to is maturing and that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients;
  3. Waters intended for human consumption, including those where the only added ingredients are carbon dioxide and/or flavourings;
  4. A herb, a spice or mixtures thereof;
  5. Salt and salt substitutes;
  6. Table top sweeteners;
  7. Products covered by Directive 1999/4/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 February 1999 relating to coffee extracts and chicory extracts ( 1 ), whole or milled coffee beans and whole or milled decaffeinated coffee beans;
  8. Herbal and fruit infusions, tea, decaffeinated tea, instant or soluble tea or tea extract, decaffeinated instant or soluble tea or tea extract, which do not contain other added ingredients than flavourings which do not modify the nutritional value of the tea;
  9. Fermented vinegars and substitutes for vinegar, including those where the only added ingredients are flavourings;
  10. Flavourings;
  11. Food additives;
  12. Processing aids;
  13. Food enzymes;
  14. Gelatine;
  15. Jam setting compounds;
  16. Yeast;
  17. Chewing-gums;
  18. Food in packaging or containers the largest surface of which has an area of less than 25 cm²;
  19. Food, including handcrafted food, directly supplied by the manufacturer of small quantities of products to the final consumer or to local retail establishments directly supplying the final consumer.

 

 

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[3] Article 3(7) of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 defines retails as follows:

“retail means the handling and/or processing of food and its storage at the point of sale or delivery to the final consumer, and includes distribution terminals, catering operations, factory canteens, institutional catering, restaurants and other similar food service operations, shops, supermarket distribution centres and wholesale outlets.”

 

 

Areas

  • All Areas

Audiences

  • Food Manafacturer
  • Food Producer
  • Retailer
  • Enforcer
  • Academic
  • Food Industry
  • Local Authority
  • Primary producer

Interests

  • nutrition
  • food
  • food law
  • diet
  • health
  • Scottish diet