Food labelling e-learning course
Food information - the FIC and beyond

Food information - the FIC and beyond

Image of jam label

As well as the information requirements in the FIC, some products must meet further requirements given in product-specific legislation. The FIC doesn't affect the detail of this information but sets out principles to ensure it is relevant, beneficial and clear.

The term 'mandatory food information' covers both the requirements laid out in the FIC and the extra requirements for particular products.

This all-encompassing mandatory food information includes, for instance, the cocoa solids declaration on chocolate, the fruit and sugar declarations on jam, and the quality-related class information on poultry, meat, eggs and some fruit and vegetables. There are some general rules in the FIC for the information:

  • It should cover the areas of: the characteristics of the food, the protection of consumers' health, the safe use of the food, the nutritional characteristics of the food.
  • In distance-selling transactions it should all be available before the purchase is concluded (other than the durability date).
  • Where food is non-prepacked, it should nevertheless be passed along the supply chain.
  • Where food is prepacked, it should be marked on the package or an attached label.
  • It should be easily visible, clearly legible, indelible, and not hidden, obscured, detracted from or interrupted by other material (but requirements from product-specific legislation are not subject to the specific minimum font size requirement of the FIC - see the page on Legibility).
  • It must all be in a language easily understood in the area where the food is marketed.

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