New Q&A items related to the nutrition declaration

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1 New Q&A items related to the nutrition declaration June Can graphical representation be used to illustrate the numerical value of the nutrition declaration? (Articles 9 (2), 35) The Regulation allows additional forms of presentation for the nutrition declaration, provided tably that they aim to facilitate consumer understanding of the contribution or importance of the food to the energy and nutrient content of a diet. Graphical representations, such as columns, bars or pies charts can be used in addition to the numbers in order to illustrate the quantities or percentages of nutrients and /or energy. However, such representation cant substitute the information given in numbers and must fulfil the requirements of Article For food supplements, what reference values shall be used for the declaration of vitamins and minerals? (Article 29, Annex XIII) The rules on the nutrition declaration of the Regulation do t apply to food supplements. However, Article 8(3) of Directive 2002/46/EC on food supplements stipulates that information on vitamins and minerals shall be expressed as a percentage of the reference values mentioned, as the case may be, in the Annex to Directive 90/496/EEC, the former legislation on nutrition labelling which will be replaced by the Regulation from 13 December There is, however, requirement to refer to Reference Intakes (RIs) on food supplements, in contrast to foods whose nutrition declaration is governed by the Regulation. While the term Nutrient Reference Value (NRV) can be used provided that its acronym is accompanied by its full name on the label, it is advised for reasons of consistency to use the same termilogy as for other foods and to refer to Reference Intakes. However, there is need to provide the statement 'reference intake of an average adult (8400 kj/2000 kcal)' referred to in Article 32(5). 3. Will it be possible to use the new termilogy 'Reference Intakes' for the labelling of food supplements in advance of 13 December 2014? (Articles 29, 54(3)) Article 54(3) of the Regulation allows foods labelled in accordance with Articles 30 to 35 (the nutrition-related provisions in Section 3 of Chapter IV) to be placed on the market before 13 December It will therefore be possible to use the new termilogy ( Reference Intakes ) before 13 December 2014 when labelling vitamins and minerals on foodstuffs that are subject to the nutrition labelling provisions of the Regulation. While the Section 3 provisions do t apply to foods falling within the scope of Directive 2002/46/EC on food supplements, in the interests of consistency and helping businesses comply with the Regulation, the new termilogy may also be used in advance of 13 December 2014 for the labelling of vitamins and minerals on food supplements. 1

2 4. Do food supplements bearing a nutrition or a health claim have to provide a nutrition declaration in accordance with the Regulation? (Articles 29, 49) No. The rules requiring a nutrition declaration do t apply to food supplements. However, as a general rule, food supplements have to provide nutrition information in accordance with Article 8 of Directive 2002/46/EC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to food supplements. When a nutrition or a health claim is made, following Article 7 of Regulation (EC) No1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods, the amount of the nutrient or substance shall also be stated per daily dose. 5. To declare the amount of fibre (or any other nutrient referred to in Article 30(2)) on a n-prepacked food, what are the other nutritional elements that need to be declared? (Articles 30(1), (2) (5), 32, 33, 36(1) and 49) If a food business operator is interested in declaring the amount of fibre of a product, or the amount of any other nutrient referred to in Article 30(2) then the full nutrition declaration must be given. This comprises: - the energy value; and - the amounts of fat, saturates, carbohydrate, sugars, protein and salt. When the amount of any nutrient referred to in Article 30(2) is qualified by a nutrition claim, the amount of that nutrient shall also be stated in the nutrition declaration. 6. When Member States adopt national measures concerning the nutrition declaration of n-prepacked foods, a) can they select the nutritional elements independently of what is prescribed for mandatory nutrition labelling of prepacked foods (Articles 9(1) and 44(1)(b)); and b) can they choose other ways of expression and presentation than the ones that are possible for prepacked foods? (Article 44(2)(3)) a) In accordance with Article 44(1)(b), Member States may adopt provisions on elements of the particulars laid down in Article 9. So Member States can choose from among the different elements of the mandatory nutrition declaration b) In accordance with Article 44(2), Member States may adopt national measures concerning the means through which the nutrition declarations are to be made available and, where appropriate, their form of expression and presentation. The means, and, where appropriate, their form of expression and presentation can therefore be different from the ones prescribed for prepacked foods. However, for a better consumer understanding, the nutrition declaration should be coherent with the one on prepacked foods, as appropriate. For example, when labelling energy content, Member States should use the same units stipulated for prepacked foods, first kilojoules (kj), then kilocalories (kcal). If a reference quantity is chosen rather 2

3 than a portion or consumption unit, it shall be 100g or 100ml. The measurement units shall also be those stipulated in Annex XV. The text of such national measures shall also be communicated to the Commission without delay. 7. For food packed with a liquid, should the nutrition declaration correspond to the drained product (without the liquid) or the product in its entirety (with the liquid)? (Article 31(3)) Solid foods can be presented in a liquid medium, as defined in paragraph 5 of Annex IX (brine, fruit juice) or other liquids (oil). Some consumers eat the totality of such products, while others only eat the drained products. In that context, the nutrition declaration should therefore preferably be calculated for the total content of the food product, the solid food and the liquid together, when the product is likely to be consumed in its entirety. This would be the case for canned tuna packed in olive oil, or fruit salad in syrup. This information can be voluntarily supplemented by a nutrition declaration for the drained product. For other products such as pickles or herring canned in vinegar, or mozzarella packed in whey, for which the liquid medium is t expected to be consumed, nutrition information based on the drained net weight appears more relevant and shall be given. This information can be voluntarily supplemented by a nutrition declaration for the product in its entirety. 8. Are the following foods exempted from the requirements of the mandatory nutrition declaration? (Annex V, Regulation (EC) No1925/2006, Directive 2014/63/EU) Flour (for example wheat flour) yes An exemption from the requirement of the mandatory nutrition declaration is provided for unprocessed foods that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients. Flour which does t contain any added ingredients e.g. additives, vitamins, minerals and which has t undergone any processing other than milling and husking is considered as an unprocessed product, as defined in Article 2.1(b), which makes reference to the following definition in Regulation (EC) No 852/2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs: " foodstuffs that have t undergone processing, and includes products that have been divided, parted, severed, sliced, boned, minced, skinned, ground, cut, cleaned, trimmed, husked, milled, chilled, frozen, deep-frozen or thawed". Par-boiled rice and pre-cooked rice Rice benefits from the exemption for unprocessed products that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredient. Par boiled rice undergoes a precooking step and therefore cant be considered as an unprocessed food. Vegetable oil Vegetable oils are processed products and therefore cant benefit from the exemption for unprocessed products that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients. 3

4 Sugar Sugar is a processed product and therefore cant benefit from the exemption for unprocessed products that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients. Fermented vinegar with added salt The exemption for fermented vinegars and substitutes for vinegar is only valid for product to which the only added ingredients are flavourings. Iodised salt An exemption from the requirement of the mandatory nutrition declaration is provided for salt and salt substituted. However, following Article 7(3) of Regulation (EC) No 1925/2006 on the addition of vitamins and minerals and of certain other substances to foods, the nutrition declaration of products to which vitamins and minerals have been added shall be compulsory. Honey yes Honey is considered as an unprocessed food and made of constituents and t ingredients, as clarified by recital 3 of Directive 2014/63/EU amending Council Directive 2001/110/EC relating to honey. Honey can therefore benefit from the exemption from the requirement provided for unprocessed foods that comprise a single ingredient or category of ingredients. Herb and spice products containing flavourings and /or acidity regulators yes Herbs, spices or mixtures thereof are exempted from the requirement of the mandatory nutrition declaration, as they are consumed in small quantities and have significant nutritional impact on the diet. Similarly, such products containing flavourings and /or acidity regulators benefit from this exemption, provided the flavourings and /or acidity regulators do t have a significant nutritional impact. 9. When will foods for particular nutritional uses have to comply with the rules on the nutrition declaration set out in FIC (for the aspects t covered by their specific nutrition labelling rules)? (Article 54(2)) Article 54(2) of FIC requires that the nutrition declaration provided on a voluntary basis has to comply with Articles 30 to 35 of the Regulation (provisions on the nutrition declaration) as of 13 December Article 29(2) of FIC states that the rules on the nutrition declaration shall apply without prejudice to Directive 2009/39/EC on foodstuffs intended for particular nutritional uses and to the specific Directives adopted within this framework [see Q&A 3.1]. Therefore foods for particular nutritional uses will have to comply with the rules on the nutrition declaration set out in FIC from 13 December 2014 only for those aspects of their nutrition declaration which are provided on a voluntary basis or are required in the event of a nutrition and/or health claim, and are t already covered by Directive 2009/39/EC and the specific Directives adopted within this Framework. 4

5 For example, following Commission Directive 2006/125/EC, processed cereal-based foods and baby foods for infants and young children shall bear the nutrition information on the available energy value, expressed in kj and kcal, and the protein, carbohydrate and lipid content, expressed in numerical form, per 100g or 100 ml of the product as sold and, where appropriate, per specified quantity of the product as proposed for consumption. Article 54(2) of FIC is t applicable for products complying with the abovementioned mandatory requirements. Therefore, processed cereal-based foods and baby foods providing the nutrition declaration in line with Directive 2006/125/EC will t have to comply with Article 30(1) of the FIC Regulation as of 13 December 2014 (i.e. they would t have to indicate, in addition to the nutrients listed above, the content of sugars, saturated fats and salt). However, if operators decide to provide additional elements in the nutrition declaration of these products on a voluntary basis after 13 December 2014, Article 54(2) would apply (e.g. it would t be possible to supplement the nutrition declaration provided on the basis of Directive 2006/125/EC with the content in sugars only. If the content of sugars is mentioned then the content in saturated fat and salt shall also be indicated, by application of the provision in Article 30(1) of the FIC Regulation). It should be kept in mind that Directive 2009/39/EC will be repealed by Regulation (EU) No 609/2013 on food intended for infants and young children, food for special medical purposes and total diet replacement for weight control, which will apply from 20 July The new Regulation requires the Commission to adopt by 20 July 2015 delegated acts on the foods it covers. The delegated acts will contain, inter alia, specific rules on food information provided for these products and will explicitly clarify the relationship with the rules of FIC. 10. Is it possible to label the fibre content using a percentage of a reference intake, even if there is harmonised reference intake laid down in the Regulation? (Articles 30(2), 35(1)(e)) No. The only nutrients for which the amount can be expressed as a percentage of a reference intake are the ones for which reference intakes are set out in Annex XIII, even when additional forms of expression and presentation of the nutrition declaration are used. 11. Is it possible to repeat the nutrition declaration several times in the principal field of vision, for example, once in the form of a simple declaration of energy value and ather time in the form of energy value together with the amounts of fat, saturates, sugars and salt? (Article 30(3), 34(3)) The nutrition declaration can be repeated in the principal field of vision as the energy value alone or as the energy value together with the amounts of fat, saturates, sugars and salt. It is also possible to repeat this information more than once, as the energy value alone, and as the energy value together with the amounts of fat, saturates, sugars and salt. 5

6 However, these voluntary additions of the nutrition declaration may only be labelled in the principal field of vision and have to comply with the provisions on minimum font size. 12. Is the labelling of the content a single nutrient allowed on the front of pack, like X% fat? (Article 30(3), Regulation (EC) No1924/2006) The voluntary repetition of the nutrition declaration does t allow the labelling of a single nutrient content, as the information to be provided would be either the energy value alone or the energy value together with the amounts of fat, saturates, sugars and salt. However, the name of a food can include the declaration of a nutrient content when this declaration is required by law. It would also be possible to label indications such as 'low fat' or 'fat<3%', provided they comply with the conditions of use of that claim and the other relevant provisions of Regulation (EC) No1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods. 6

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