Business and Economy

Free webinars on changes to food labelling laws on offer to businesses

Posted on: 11 September 2020

Businesses selling or serving food in catering establishments are invited to attend one of three webinars to help them prepare for changes in food labelling legislation next year.

The webinars are being hosted by Devon, Somerset and Torbay Trading Standards, and are open to any business in the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership Area, in Somerset, Torbay, Devon and Plymouth.

The webinars follow a 48 per cent increase in allergen related complaints regionally between 2018 and 2019.

In the UK, about ten people die every year from food-induced anaphylaxis – last year trading standards purchased food from multiple outlets, which had been described by the premises as not containing one or more of the 14 most recognised allergens.

A third of the products tested were incorrectly described and contained at least one undisclosed allergen.

Currently foods which are made, packed and sold on the same premises are not required to show ingredients or allergy information on the product label.

This will change in October 2021 and the law will require more foods to be labelled with allergen information.

The legislation will require businesses to provide a full ingredients list with allergenic ingredients emphasised within it when labelling foods which are pre-packed for direct sale.

Those that do not could be prosecuted.

The webinars will help businesses understand what their responsibilities are and where they can obtain support and guidance.

The webinars will be approximately one hour long, including a list of expert speakers from Trading Standards and Environmental Health with a Q&A at the end.

Businesses will also receive a certificate of attendance for this event for their own training records. The webinar will be recorded, so that reminders can be sent to businesses and assist us with ongoing support.

Paul Thomas, the head of Devon, Somerset and Torbay Trading standards said: “If you are a business who sells food it is vital that you have a thorough understanding of the changes in legislation and how it impacts on your business – the health of your business and of your customers depends on it. These free webinars will answer any questions you may have and if you need additional guidance, will signpost you to where you can obtain additional support.”

Councillor Rufus Gilbert, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy, skills and Trading Standards, said: “I would encourage any business who sells pre-packed food to sign up to one of these webinars. By doing so you will have chance listen to expert speakers.
“Their guidance will give you the tools you need to make sure your business is compliant before the new rules come into force next year.”

The events are on Monday 28 September, 10am-11am, Tuesday 29 September, 2pm-3pm and Monday 5 October, 2pm-3pm.

To book your place go to the Eventbrite website  by clicking here. 

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