The EU’s biggest food industry group – FoodDrinkEurope – has backed Friday’s enabling of the article 13 list of 222 approved and 1500+ rejected health claims in the European Union’s 27 member states.
The mandating of the primary aspect of the EU nutrition and health claims regulation (NHCR) was, FDE said, “a positive step towards providing more certainty and clarity for consumers while creating a level-playing field for industry.”
FDE said: “This list means consumers can confidently make use of scientifically-substantiated information about the beneficial properties of food and drink products.”
Industry is now looking to the European Commission and Member States to agree on outstanding Article 13.1 health claims and to find a solution for claims on botanicals.”
The group did not waste the opportunity however to call for improvement in the functioning of the regulation.
“Food manufacturers are looking forward to further improvements in the health claims process to direct research and development in the desired direction and strengthen industry innovation in the future.”
Other groups like the European Responsible Nutrition Alliance (ERNA) and the European Federation of Associations of Health Product Manufacturers (EHPM) have been more vocal in their criticism of the NHCR on grounds of disproportionality and misrepresenting nutrition science, among other grounds.
ERNA on Friday issued a free guidance to assist companies operating in the new claims environment.
National trade bodies in the UK, the Netherlands and Italy have mounted a joint action to challenge the regulation in European courts.