Clearer labelling would help shoppers and farmers

12-May-2016 @ 13:30

Farmers and consumers would benefit from a proposal, backed by Conservative MEPs, for country of origin labelling to be extended to some dairy and meat products.

The move is intended to rebuild trust following recent food scandals, enable shoppers to make informed choices when buying food and assist local producers.

The European Parliament today supported a resolution calling upon the European Commission to bring forward plans for information on where raw materials are sourced to be compulsory on milk and lightly processed dairy and meat products such as cheese, cream, bacon and sausages.

Conservative Environment co-ordinator Julie Girling MEP said: "There is a growing desire amongst people to know more about the food they buy and it is right that compulsory country of origin labelling be introduced where it can be done so without placing disproportionate burdens on manufacturers.

"This scheme would make it easier for British farmers to promote their high quality produce, while a harmonised EU-wide approach provides more certainty for consumers as some current voluntary labelling schemes can be misleading."

Agriculture spokesman Richard Ashworth said there was a demand from both consumers and producers for more information on packaging.

"There is a practical and cost element to be considered, which is why we want this measure limited to lightly processed dairy and meat products, but the benefits would outweigh any limited extra costs that might be incurred."

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