Food and Drink Labelling Changes Post Brexit; Everything You Need to Know
As of the 1st January 2021 food and drink producers, manufacturers, retailers and suppliers must change their product labels to be in line with Brexit changes. Here is everything you need to know in order to stay in-line with the new laws.
Exporting to the EU
Ensure you check with your EU importer how the EU’s new labelling requirements will affect your products specifically. It is worth noting that food products placed on the EU market before 1 January 2010 can continue to be sold and distributed in the UK without labelling changes.
Pre-packaged food must have an EU address for the FBO (food business operator) on the packaging and/or label.
Products can only have the EU organic logo after 1 January 2021 if; (1) the UK control body is authorised by the UK to certify UK goods for export to the EU, or (2) the UK and the EU agree to recognise each others standards.
You must not use the EU emblem on goods produced in the UK from 1 January 2021 unless authorised by the EU.
On POAO (products of animal origin), the EU health and identification marks must be replaced with the UK health and identification marks.
UK food can not be labelled as EU origin from 1 January 2021.
Goods sold in the UK
EU health and identification marks can continue to be used on POAO produced and sold in the UK until 1 January 2021. After that date, UK products must use the new UK health and identification marks.
A UK address must be used for the FBO on pre-packaged food sold in the UK. If the FBO is not in the UK, you must include the address of your importer istead.
UK organic products can only have the EU organic logo after 1 January 2021 if; (1) the UK control body is authorised by the UK to certify UK goods for export to the EU, or (2) the UK and the EU agree to recognise each others standards.
Some foods, such as eggs, must be labelled with the specific country of origin, the must continue to be included from 1 January 2021. If the food is from a remaining member state, it can be labelled as EU origin. Any food produced in the UK must not be labelled as EU origin from 1 January 2021.
Eggs from non-EU countries that do not meet UK egg trade regulations must be labeled as ‘Non-UK standard’ rather than ‘Non-EC standard’.
When the label does not list each country of origin, for example on minced meat and mixed vegetables, references to the EU with the UK need to be changed. So, ‘origin EU and non-EU’ will become ‘origin UK and non-UK’.
If you are part of the Approved Trader Scheme, the EU emblem must be removed from UK food labels.
Beef and veal that was born and/or slaughtered outside of the UK should be labelled as ‘Origin: Non-UK’. If the origin country of the animal is not known, the product must be labelled ‘beef from a live import into the UK’ rather than into the EC.
Blended honey and olive oil must have each country of origin listed on the label, or state ‘blend of [product] from more than one country’.
When it comes to GI (geographical indication) logos, the relevant UK logo must be used on the products. Logo use is optional for GI-protected wines and spirits. As of 1 January 2021 the government will set up its own GI schemes, and you will have 3 years from that date to adapt the relevant UK logo onto food and agricultural product packaging.