Veal labelling in the EU is to change, ending disagreements between Belgium and the Netherlands and France and Italy on how the meat should be labelled.

The changes, which have come about as a result of differences in languages and definitions, have been adopted by Brussels, although they are yet to be signed off by the European Council of Ministers. The proposals are for two different sub-categories - under eight months old and under 12 months old. Traders will also be required to list a sales description for each member state.

Meat from animals slaughtered at less than eight months old will be labelled as veal in the UK and labelled as beef when calves are aged between eight and 12 months old.

The new labelling will be applicable for all imported beef and veal and for any animal slaughtered from July 1, 2007. Traders will have to display the category letter, either X for veal or Y for beef; a sales description; and the age of the animal at the time of slaughter.