The FSA is raising awareness of changes to allergen labelling laws by providing new information and resources to help businesses prepare before they come into effect on 1 October 2021 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
This information will help businesses check if they are affected by the changes and what they need to do to prepare.
The new laws will help protect food hypersensitive consumers by requiring potentially life-saving allergen information on the label of prepacked for direct sale food.
This is food which is packaged at the same place it is sold or offered to consumers and is also in its packaging before it is ordered or selected. The FSA has produced a guide to help businesses check exactly what products will require the new labelling.
The changes follow the tragic death of teenager Natasha Ednan-Laperouse from an allergic reaction caused by a baguette which did not require allergen labelling.
Governments across the UK have introduced new legislation – referred to as ‘Natasha’s Law’ – which will require these foods to have ingredient and allergen information provided on the label from 1 October 2021.
Rebecca Sudworth, Director of Policy, The Food Standards Agency
“We know this is a challenging time for food businesses, but we encourage them to check if they are affected by this new law and what they need to do to meet the requirements.
“It’s important to get it right – not just for their business - but for the millions of people in the UK living with a food allergy or intolerance.
“Everyone deserves to be able to make safer choices when they buy their food.”
Tim McLachlan, Chief Executive, Natasha Allergy Research Foundation
"We need better labelling so that people with food allergies can eat prepacked foods with confidence.
"We know this is a difficult time for the food and hospitality industry but we encourage them to take action now to comply with Natasha’s Law which will add transparency, give confidence and in turn prevent more tragedies.
"This is beyond labelling, it is about life and death.
The Food Standards Agency protects public health and consumers' wider interests in food for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Similar changes are expected to be introduced in Scotland by Food Standards Scotland.