On 6 December 2021 the FSA (Food Standards Agency) in the UK launched a consultation to gather views from businesses and consumers on the use of voluntary precautionary #allergen labeling (PAL) on #food packaging, also known as “may contain” statements.
Most food businesses are using this sentence on the label to try to protect consumers. However, a recent study by FSA found that many consumers were confused by precautionary allergen #labeling statements on prepacked foods. This is because the wording of PAL statements can differ between products and the level of #risk may not be clear. Indeed no standards have been set and for many food businesses it seems not to be very well understood when and how they need to report the cross-contamination on the label.
The FSA is considering developing standards on PAL on prepacked foods and providing new guidance on wording, font, style, and location of this information on the label. This would be a great step to make the “may contain” statement more clear especially for those people who live with food allergies, intolerances or coeliac disease. It would be good if from this consultation also the European Union will get some inspiration to regulate the voluntary precautionary allergen labeling say’s Maura Di Martino Hylo.