Europe Postpones Food Labeling Decision.

December 12, 2022

The adoption of the Nutri-Score as the standard for front-of-pack labeling in the EU has been dropped from the present agenda.

The current European Union legislative agenda no longer includes the adoption of the Nutri-Score for front-of-pack labeling. A member of the European Parliament shared the information during the national Coldiretti agricultural association conference in Rome.

According to Paolo De Castro, a member of the European Parliament’s agriculture and rural development panel, the proposal for an EU-wide food labeling system that included Nutri-Score as one of the viable alternatives has been withdrawn. And it will not be discussed again before the 2024 elections. This implies that neither the commission nor the legislature will be able to propose or pass any legislation regarding food labels.

After remarks made by Italian and European politicians last month, the procedure for a standardized food labeling system for the European Union has been delayed. A judgement on the topic was initially due by the end of the year but was recently pushed out to the second half of 2023. Significant disparities in how EU members approach food labeling were the primary cause of the delay.

Nutri-Score is a front-of-pack label that resembles a traffic light and rates the nutritional value of packaged foods based on their fat, sugar, salt, and calorie content per 100-gram or millilitre portion. The healthiest choice is denoted by “Green A,” while the least healthy is indicated by “Red E.” Nutri-Score has been seen as the front-runner because it has been widely adopted voluntarily by a number of nations, including France and Germany, as well as significant food producers.

The CNS experts urged the European Commission and the European Parliament to adopt mandatory nutritional labeling that is understandable by most citizens, especially the most vulnerable, and that has been scientifically proven to be effective in order to protect the health of people.

Before the CNS issued its conclusion, 23 MEPs sent an open letter to the European Commission in which they appeared to criticize Nutri-Score while requesting a different strategy. The letter also asked the commission to consider how the label assesses non-nutritional contents, such as whether or not a food is processed. The nutritional label should be simple, avoid any judgment of the value of the foods, and offer information on calories and nutrients per serving.

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