In December 2006, the Regulation on nutrition and health claims made on foods was adopted by the Council and Parliament. For the first time, this Regulation lays down harmonised rules across the European Union for the use of nutrition claims such as “low fat”, “high fibre” or health claims such as “reducing blood cholesterol”.
This Regulation foresees implementing measures to ensure that any claim made on foods' labelling, presentation or marketing in the European Union is clear, accurate and based on evidence accepted by the whole scientific community. Consequently foods bearing claims that could mislead consumers will be eliminated from the market. In addition, in order to bear claims, foods will have to have appropriate nutrient profiles which will be set. This will enhance the consumers' ability to make informed and meaningful choices.
Further, this Regulation respects fair competition and protects innovation in the area of foods. It also facilitates the free circulation of foods bearing claims as any food company will be able to use the same claims on its products everywhere in Europe.
In order to have a comprehensive overview of the permitted nutrition claims and of permitted, rejected and pending health claims, the Commission has established a Register of Nutrition and Health Claims.
For further information, you can consult the following official documents:
- Regulation on Nutrition and Health Claims made on foods of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 December 2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods.
- Guidance on the implementation of Regulation (EC) N° 1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods approved by the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health on 14 December 2007.
- Commission Implementing Decision of 24 January 2013 adopting guidelines for the implementation of specific conditions for health claims laid down in Article 10 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council (2013/63/EU)
- Commission Regulation (EU) No 907/2013 of 20 September 2013 setting the rules for applications concerning the use of generic descriptors (denominations)