UK meat labelling - could do better?
New guidance from the Food Standards Agency on
labelling the country of origin of meat is a step in the right direction say two
of Britain's leading meat bodies.
Both EBLEX and BPEX have highlighted the need for
clear, transparent labelling so the consumer is left in no doubt about what they
are buying. he FSA guidelines are aimed at benefiting consumers by encouraging
industry to adopt consistent labelling practices.
The objective of the
guidance is to help food businesses, including manufacturers, producers,
retailers and caterers, to comply with the law and avoid misleading labelling.
It will also assist enforcement authorities in identifying misleading country of
EBLEX Chief Executive Richard Lowe said: “There is
plenty of existing legislation which says labels should not mislead consumers,
but we still see sporadic examples of poor labelling and merchandising
“Our extensive research of consumers' understanding of labels
conducted last winter showed a spectrum of good to bad labelling practice. We
know shoppers' desire for country of origin information on meat packs is higher
than for any other food category.”
BPEX Chief Executive Mick Sloyan said:
“BPEX's engagement with retailers has seen labelling practice improve,
especially on fresh meat, but there remain many examples of poor practice with
regard to processed and cured pork products. “It will be interesting to see
whether during this year's festive season origin labelling of gammon is improved
as that has in the past sometimes been rather suspect.”
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