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27 May 2015

Proposal to include the source of meat in processed foods

With two-thirds of MEPs supporting EU citizens’ demands for transparency, it’s now the turn of the European Commission to act


The European Parliament endorses consumers’ right to know the origin of all meat used as an ingredient.
There has never been a more pressing need for this information, since food fraud poses a danger to the customer.

The Commission is analysing proposals originally considered at the end of 2013 regarding this issue. More than 60% of deputies favour a food “census” to identify the meat contained in processed foods.

The demand for traceability seeks to win back consumer confidence by means of a label stating clearly and simply the source of all meat used as an ingredient. Bearing in mind that products consumed in European countries contain 30 to 50% of ground beef the vital importance of this measure is self-evident.

Although many companies have been providing this information to customers for years, the hoped-for new European Commission directive would be a welcome development in the relationship between consumers and food producers, with mandatory origin labelling for all companies.

In 90% of cases, the label is a motivator for people to buy the product, a fact that lends weight to the case for mandatory adoption by all companies intending to produce food in a serious and responsible way.

This is a good sign. Any move that makes the processes of the food chain more transparent will be key in the fight to combat food fraud and thus to ensure the health of all consumers.


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