Change, they say, is always a good thing. There is however a point where too much is too much. The food industry may be a case in point.
In recent years, there are very few areas of food regulation left that remain unchanged – perhaps with potentially more far reaching effects than the changes to food labelling – and this looks set to continue as politics swirl around the sector.
The old food labelling regime was not perfect. It had grown piecemeal at EU level since 2000 and needed some review and consolidation. In response to this need the Food Information to Consumers Regulation was born. It was conceived as a Regulation and not a Directive (like the previous labelling law) which meant that there was very little scope for local change in implementation.
While this move should be good for cross border trade by achieving consistency six months on, the issue is in the interpretation and application of the law, rather than the exact words. Consistency remains a pipe dream, but as we move towards an ever closer Union – either with or without the UK – it always remains possible.
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