Dominic Watkins and Anne-Marie Taylor discuss the latest Legal and Regulatory News

Dominic Watkins and Anne-Marie Taylor discuss the latest Legal and Regulatory News with October 2015

CJEU Ruling on Health Claims

Few Regulations have created as much upheaval for the food industry as Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 on Nutrition and Health Claims (‘HCR’). The Health Food Manufacturers’ Association (‘HFMA’), which represents manufacturers and suppliers of health products in the UK, along with other trade groups including Natuur-& gezondheidsProducten Nederland (‘NPN’) in the Netherlands, is the latest group that attempted to challenge the maelstrom caused by the HCR at the Court of Justice of the European Union, but their action was dismissed in its entirety on 12 June 2015. We take a look at the case and the implications for food businesses.

Composition in focus in the UK as the health agenda is a central focus

In recent years in the UK considerable focus has been put on the composition of food and the role that food manufacturers have to play in the health agenda. Many food manufacturers have already signed up to a “Responsibility Deal” which sees food business reducing the levels of fat, sugar and salt and for many years there has been specific rules restricting the advertising on TV of those products that are high in fat sugar or salt from being advertised at times that are populate with children. With an eye on similar schemes in other states, fat and, more recently, a sugar “tax” on foods high in either has gained popularity in the media.

Political change could see vast changes as devolution agenda gains pace

A central manifesto pledge of the new government is an “in or out” referendum on EU membership. This means that in the next two years the UK people will decide whether or not they wish to be a part of the EU, or not.

Primary Authority extension

As part of its better regulation agenda, the UK has for a number of years had ‘Primary Authority’ relationships between the regulated and the local regulator. These relationships were initially aimed at multisite businesses operating across the UK which meant that they were being regulated by dozens and sometimes hundreds of different local regulators, each of which could, in theory at least, make a different decision about the same issue.

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This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.

Dominic Watkins

Partner - Head of Food Group

I am Head of DWF’s internationally renowned food sector group as well as being Head of Regulatory in London.

Anne Marie Taylor

Senior Solicitor