Waitrose is believed to be set to snub a group of major manufacturers by supporting the Food Standards Agency’s traffic-light labelling proposal.
Just two weeks before the FSA decides whether it is to recommend industry-wide adoption of multiple traffic lights, The Grocer has learned that Waitrose is to trial traffic lights on a range of products.
A group of manufacturers including Cadbury Schweppes, Masterfoods, Kellogg, Kraft, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever have introduced GDA-based front-of-pack labelling, a move seen as a bid to derail the FSA’s traffic lights.
It is understood that the FSA has lined up a retailer to trial traffic-light labelling, although it is not known whether Waitrose is the retail partner involved.
A Waitrose spokeswoman said the chain was finalising its response to nutritional labelling with the agency.
An FSA spokeswoman denied that arrangements for traffic-light trials had been confirmed with any retailer as the final decision on a labelling model was to be announced on March 9. She said: “Once we have agreed on a system we will be looking for take-up from all retailers and manufacturers.”
Spar, meanwhile, has pledged allegiance to Guideline Daily Amounts. It has begun to put GDA information on ready meal packaging and plans to introduce the signposting on all own label packaging by the end of the year.
Fiona McLelland