Industry groups have welcomed the European Parliament’s decision to dilute legislation on nutrition and health claims.
The EU had been expected to imposed mandatory nutrition labelling on all pre-packaged foods sold in the EU in 2006.
The proposals were originally drafted following concerns that some claims are made without scientific backing or are misleading by suggesting the product could improve health. Terms including ‘fat-free’, ‘no added sugar’, ‘light’ or ‘high protein’ could still be regulated, but last week’s vote means the number of prohibited claims will be reduced. Restriction of health claims made on the basis of nutrient profiling has also been scrapped.
The original proposals set out terms to enforce prior approval for health claims.
However, the EU has now ruled that scientific data supplied with a notification of claims on labels is sufficient.