Front-of-pack nutrition labelling: EU Member States fail to reach consensus
PRESS RELEASE - 15.12.2020
The EU’s German Presidency has just adopted conclusions on food labelling. Sadly, what were originally intended to be Council conclusions – signed off by all Member States – have been downgraded to non-unanimous Presidency conclusions, which send a weaker message.
Monique Goyens, Director General of BEUC, commented:
“Despite good efforts by the German Presidency, it is disappointing that Member States have not been able to reach a unanimous position on the basic elements of any future nutritional label. While many Member States rightly support and welcome the principle of a mandatory, harmonised front-of-pack label, it is a shame that a minority of countries keep blocking solutions to help consumers to shop for healthier food.
“With one in two adults either overweight or obese, diet-related diseases are still a serious issue in the EU.1 International experts such as the World Health Organization have recognised front-of-pack nutrition labelling as a crucial tool to contribute to the fight against obesity.2 It is therefore a no brainer that a harmonised nutrition label on the front of packaging must become mandatory in the EU.
“There is a very high level of independent scientific evidence pointing to Nutri-Score as the most effective scheme in making consumers’ shopping baskets healthier. As such, we believe Nutri-Score should be the label rolled out across the EU.”
The EU Commission is due to make a proposal on harmonised mandatory front-of-pack nutrition labelling at the end of 2022.
- BEUC press release ‘Seven Member States oppose ambitious EU plans to help consumers eat healthier food’, 21 September 2020.
- BEUC position on front-of-pack nutritional labelling, 2019.
- BEUC factsheet on Nutri-Score, 2019.