Why is Food Labelling Important?
Food labelling is vital. Not only is it a legal requirement if you’re a food producer, it also helps consumers make informed decisions when purchasing food and helps them to store and use the food they’ve purchased safely.
Your pre-packaged food must include the following on its labels:
1. The name of the food. This must be a true representation of your product and must not be false or misleading.
2. A list of ingredients. You must use ‘Ingredients’ as the heading and list the ingredients used to make the product in descending order of weight.
3. The percentage of certain ingredients. If you emphasise a certain ingredient on the packaging of your product, such as ‘Chicken Burgers’ you must state the quantity of this ingredient as a percentage in the ingredient list. For example: chicken (75%). This is also a requirement if you highlight the ingredient with a picture or graphic.
4. Any instructions for use, such as cooking instructions if they are needed. This includes the cooking equipment, temperature, cooking time and any other specific instructions needed to prepare the food.
5. ‘Use by’ or ‘best before’ dates. By putting these dates on your products, you will help customers store and use your food safely, as well as reduce food waste.
Importance of Food Labels
Customers are more invested than ever before in nutritional information, especially as the number of food-related diseases and health problems are on the rise. Therefore, many people opt for more nutritious alternatives and should be made aware of the nutrition and dietary information of all food items they purchase.
Eating a diet high in saturated fat, salt and sugar can result in several health problems. These include: high blood pressure, obesity, and heart disease
People with food allergies can suffer potentially serious consequences if they consume foods they are allergic to, so they must be very cautious about the foods they eat. If someone accidentally ingests food they are allergic to, it can cause an allergic reaction and, in some cases, be severe and life-threatening.
Labelling where your product comes from can be extremely important to consumers. Many people opt for local producers so they can support their local farmers and reduce their carbon footprint. Additionally, there are many other ethical and political motivations that may result in someone opting for one product over another.
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