As you may know, every country has its own set of regulations when it comes to labeling food products. Food labeling is a legal requirement and provides a wide range of information to help consumers make informed food choices. It protects public health and safety by displaying ingredients, use-by dates, allergens, advisory/warning statements, instructions for storage and preparation, etc.
In Australia and New Zealand, Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) sets standards for labeling food products. As per the FSANZ, here are some of the mandatory and voluntary labeling requirements:
- Allergen Labeling: All the ingredients, components of food additives, and processing aids must be mentioned on the label, along with the 'may contain' statements for common allergy-causing foods such as tree nuts, fish names, gluten foods, sulphites, royal jelly, aged/bottled wine, etc.
- Country of Origin: It is mandatory in Australia whereas voluntary in New Zealand.
- Genetically Modified (GM) Food Labeling: GM foods and ingredients containing novel DNA/novel protein must be labeled with the statement ‘genetically modified.’
- Nutrition and Health Claims: These are voluntary statements made by food businesses on labels and in food advertising.
- Ingredient List: Ingredients must be listed in descending order by weight, i.e., the first ingredient listed contributes the largest amount, and the last ingredient listed contributes the least.
- Sugar Labeling: The Code includes requirements for food labels to provide the total amount of sugars in the Nutrition Information Panel (NIP). Total sugars include natural sugar present in the food and ingredient sugar added to the food.
- Use-by and Best Before Dates: The food supplier is responsible for placing a use-by or best before date on food to guide consumers on how long food can be stored before it begins to spoil or become unsafe to eat.
- Health Star Rating (HSR) System: HSR is a voluntary front-of-pack labeling system used to rate the overall nutritional profile of packaged food and assigns the rating from ½ star to 5 stars.
Manufacturers willing to market their food products in Australia and New Zealand must comply with the FSANZ standards. Non-compliance may lead to recalls or legal repercussions as it affects consumer safety. Reach out to Freyr’s Regulatory experts today for hassle-free market entry in Australia and New Zealand! Stay informed. Stay compliant.