The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is calling for feedback on its draft guidance to help food operators interpret the new Food Allergen Labelling and Information EU Regulation.
The draft covers new rules on food allergen labelling and the provision of food allergen information on packaged and unpackaged food sold in catering outlets, which will be enforced across the EU, including the UK, from 13 December 2014.
Hospitality outlets, such as pubs, bars, hotels and restaurants will be required to make consumers aware of 14 key allergens in unpackaged food, including fish, milk and nuts, by using chalkboards, charts or relying on staff.
The FSA has requested feedback over coming weeks on whether the guidance helps food producers to understand their new allergen responsibilities. Recommendations include:
• Allergen information, or directions about where it can be found, should be accessible, visible, legible and, where appropriate, indelible
• Where information is provide orally from a member of staff, the operator must ensure it is consistent, accurate and verifiable upon challenge in written form
The FSA is asking for feedback on the draft guidance in two phases, by 5 June and 15 July 2014 respectively.
Details of the final review and the final guidance itself is expected to be published during the week starting 21 July 2014.