Natasha's Law: reflecting on the past two years

Two years ago, a new law, the Food Information (England) Regulations 2019, reshaped how pre-packaged for direct sale (PPDS) foods are labelled, with a strong initial response from food industry businesses.

Discover the current state of compliance, strategies for adaptation, and the potential for further regulatory changes as we delve into the evolving landscape of food labelling in the UK.

The state of compliance in the UK

The initial response to the new law was positive, as Brother UK's research indicated 100% of surveyed food industry businesses agreed it would enhance safety for customers with food allergies. However, the rush to comply led to varied solutions, from handwritten labels to printed paper attachments on packaging.

An Erudus study, a leader in allergy and nutritional data, revealed that over 54% of PPDS food labels inaccurately declared allergen ingredients, with illegibility, poor handwriting, patchy printing, or text overlap being common non-compliance factors.

Adapting to new requirements

Efforts to consistently meet food labelling regulations while maintaining efficiency in businesses are ongoing. Employing suitable technology is a practical approach that doesn't burden your team. The choice of solution depends on your business's size and location complexity.

For single-location businesses, a stand-alone label printing system can ensure information legibility in a cost-effective and efficient manner. However, for businesses with multiple sites or complex requirements, integrating food labelling with a menu management system, like Marka, offers a centralised database for streamlined updates. Marka has been instrumental in helping businesses, including the international Japanese food company Snowfox Group, meet compliance requirements by providing tailored software and hardware solutions, allowing them to focus on growth without technical concerns.

Further changes ahead

Many UK businesses are yet to comply with current regulations, prompting calls for clearer food labelling rules, as terms like "free-from" and "vegan" can be misleading. The potential introduction of Owen's Law may alter allergen menu labelling due to tragic incidents like Owen Carey's.

Reliable, user-friendly technology can simplify compliance with evolving regulations, enhancing food safety. Despite many British businesses not meeting standards, there are affordable labelling systems available, making efficient compliance attainable.

Where Allergen Checker comes in...

At Allergen Checker we are at the forefront of simplifying compliance with evolving regulations and enhancing food safety. In light of the potential introduction of Owen's Law, which underscores the need for clearer food labelling rules, our platform offers a solution by incorporating QR codes on menus. These QR codes provide customers with easy access to comprehensive allergen information and contribute to safer dining experiences. Explore how our user-friendly technology and affordable solutions can help your business navigate these regulatory changes

Source: The Caterer