From 13 December 2014 food allergen labelling and information rules are changing. Are you aware of the changes and what you need to do?
The new Food Information for Consumers Regulation (EU FIC) will build on current allergen labelling provisions for pre-packed foods. It will mean that all foods sold for direct sale, whether pre-packed or non-packed, will require allergen information about 14 allergens to be:
• declared on the label within the ingredients list
• offered up front to customers
The 14 allergens
There are 14 major allergens that need to be declared. They are:
• Cereals containing gluten namely wheat (such as spelt and Khorasan wheat), barley, rye and oats
• Crustaceans like prawns, crabs, lobster and crayfish etc.
• Nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, pistachio, cashew, Macadamia or Queensland nut)
• Sulphur dioxide (where added and is >10mg/kg in the finished product. Often found in dried fruit & wine)
• Lupin (related to legumes such as peanuts, peas, lentils & beans)
• Molluscs like clams, scallops, squid, mussels, oysters and snails etc.
The EU FIC will provide greater consistency to allergen labelling. It will bring general and nutrition labelling together into a single regulation to simplify and consolidate existing labelling legislation. It is good news for consumers with food allergies or intolerances, as the changes will provide allergen information in a clearer and more consistent way; making it easier for them to make safer food choices when buying food or eating out.
At MKG Foods we have prepared for such changes and may be able to help our customers overcome this potential minefield. To find out how MKG Foods can help simply call your Territory Sales Manager or our Customer Services department on 0330 058 8888.
More information and help:
• You can find more information on the EU FIC at https://www.food.gov.uk/safety-hygiene/food-allergy-and-intolerance
• You can also find useful free resources such as information, leaflets, signage, allergen matrix templates and more at http://www.food.gov.uk/science/allergy-intolerance/label
• There is free allergy e-training here: http://allergytraining.food.gov.uk