The UK Food Information Amendment, also known as Natasha’s Law, comes into effect from October 2021 and will require food businesses to provide full ingredient lists and allergen labelling on foods pre-packaged for direct sale on the premises. The legislation is being introduced to protect allergy sufferers and give them confidence in the food they buy.
The amendment was passed following the tragic death of teenager Natasha Ednan-Laperouse. Natasha who was extremely allergic to sesame, died after consuming a baguette she had purchased from a Pret store at Heathrow Airport. It did not have any allergen advice on its wrapper because as it was made on the premises, it was not required by law.
The government confirmed that stronger laws would be implemented to protect those with food allergies and give them greater confidence in the food they buy.
According to the new rules, PPDS (Prepacked for Direct Sale) food will have to clearly display the following information on the packaging:
- Name of the food.
- Full ingredients list, with allergenic ingredients emphasised (for example in bold, italics or a different colour).
These changes will apply to businesses in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It is estimated that almost 1 in 5 people in the UK suffer from an allergy.
Examples of PPDS food
Prepacked for direct sale (PPDS) food can include the following:
- Sandwiches and bakery products which are packed on site before a consumer selects or orders them
- Fast food packed before it is ordered, such as a burger under a hot lamp where the food cannot be altered without opening the packaging
- Products which are pre-packaged on site ready for sale, such as pizzas, rotisserie chicken, salads and pasta pots
- Burgers and sausages pre-packaged by a butcher on the premises ready for sale to consumers
- Samples of cookies given to consumers for free which were packed on site
- Foods packaged and then sold elsewhere by the same operator at a market stall or mobile site
- PPDS food provided in schools, care homes or hospitals and other similar settings will also require labelling
What needs to be on the label?
- The label needs to show the name of the food and the ingredients list with the 14 allergens required to be declared by law emphasised within it.
- These need to be in line with the legal requirements that apply to naming the food and listing ingredients.
- Food businesses must still ensure they comply with existing relevant food information and labelling requirements for the country they operate in.
The 14 Allergens
- Celery (inc Celeriac)
- Sesame Seeds
- Cereals containing Gluten
- Sulphur Dioxide (Sulphites)
- Molluscs (inc. Mussels & Oysters)
- Tree Nuts (inc Almonds, Hazelnuts, Walnuts, Brazil Buts, Cashews, Pecans, Pistachios and Macadamias)
For more information, please click here to visit the Food Standards Agency Website
Although Natasha's Law covers PPDS, food businesses that serve freshly prepared, ready to eat food in cafes, pubs, restaurants, hotels etc. can take positive steps to help ensure allergy sufferers also have confidence in the food they buy when dining out. Check out our full range of Allergen Awareness products for both kitchen and front of house to help ensure that staff are aware of potential allergens in the food they are serving, as well as products to encourage customers to 'Ask Before They Eat' if they suffer from any food allergies or intolerances.
Source: Mileta Signs Food Standards Agency