Food labelling e-learning course
Accompanying particulars

Accompanying particulars

Label for Cooked chicken sliced breast

When choosing a product name, businesses need to fulfil the general requirement to give potential buyers a clear idea of the nature of the food. They must judge what to include based on this requirement. But in a few particular circumstances the FIC prescribes absolutely that certain indications must be given as 'specific accompanying particulars'.

Treatments and conditions

Details of how a food has been treated or its condition should be included in the name of a food or accompany it (e.g. 'powdered', 'freeze-dried', 'concentrated', 'smoked'). This is needed if its absence could mislead the consumer. A finished food that has been frozen and thawed before sale must state 'defrosted' to accompany its name. An exception is if the freezing was a necessary step in production or the defrosting doesn't diminish the safety or quality of the food.

Irradiation of foods must always be indicated in their labelling.

Use of substitute ingredients

Where an expected ingredient in a food has been substituted, an indication of the substitute ingredient must be given. It should be close to the name of the product with reasonable prominence relative to the name.

Products with meat or fish

Meat products, meat preparations and fishery products that contain added proteins from a different animal species must indicate this in their names. If such a food appears to comprise a whole piece of meat or fish but actually consists of pieces joined together, it must be marked 'formed meat' or 'formed fish'.

Meat products and meat preparations that look like a cut, joint, slice, portion or carcass of meat but contain more than 5% added water must mention added water in their names. The same applies to fish products that look like a whole fishery product or a cut, joint, slice, portion or fillet.

Minced meat

Minced meat has to meet certain limits for fat and collagen/meat protein ratio depending on the species it is from and whether it is described as 'lean'. Values for these parameters must also be given on the labelling of the minced meat using the wording 'percentage of fat content under...' and 'collagen/meat protein ratio under...'.

Sausage casings

If sausage casing is not edible, this must be indicated. For instance, chorizo sausage is often encased in parchment not intended for consumption; it must be marked as such, even if it is not necessarily harmful if consumed.