World of Packaging – On-pack information: What you need to know now

2013 will see food law in the midst of its biggest shift in many years. It will herald the enforcement of the permitted list of on-pack and advertising health claims, and will be the first full year of transition towards the change in labeling law created by the Food Information for Consumers Regulation. Dominic Watkins, Senior Associate in the food sector group at business law firm DWF, looks at the impact of the changes in packaging on the frozen food sector.

While there had been some degree of har­mo­nization of food law across the Euro­pean Union (EU) for many years, this was achieved using directives. As directives must be implemented across each member state, a ‘Chinese whispers’ situation can occur, where the mes­sage from the original directive is repeated verbatim in some member states but in others is very much diluted. This happened in this case, resulting in little consistency in food law across Europe. This had frustrated business trading throughout a number of countries, where different interpre­ta­tions of the same laws had applied. Therefore, the EU set about creating a regulation that would set a standard across every member state. The EU realized that in the years since the previous directive, technology and food practices had developed significantly and the law needed to catch up. In particular, the new regulation observes the need to address new freezing technologies that did not exist when earlier laws were created.

Simplification and clarification have b...

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