EU plans new labelling laws for allergens

The European Union is planning to implement new allergen labelling requirements for wine from the start of next month.

The proposed new law is designed to alert consumers to wines which have used milk or egg products in the fining process and have not tested negative for residues using a technique with a detection limit of 0.25mg/l.

Wine from the 2011 vintage and earlier will be exempt from the latest EU labelling rules, which are due to be enforced on 1 July, as will wines from this year’s harvest if they are labelled before the end of the month.

According to EU guidelines, the allergen indications may be in one of the following forms:

• Contains milk, Contains milk products, Contains milk casein or Contains milk protein.

• Contains egg, Contains egg products, Contains egg protein, Contains egg lysozyme or Contains egg albumin

However, if multiple allergens are present there is no need to repeat the word “contains”.

Hence the phrase “Contains sulphites, milk, egg” would suffice if all three allergens were present.

If wine is to be marketed in all 27 EU countries it may be necessary to label in a minimum of 15 languages, and hence a pictorial alternative has been developed (see below).

The logo must be used in conjunction with text stating the presence of the allergins.

The proposed new allergen logos my be used in black and white or colour and no minimum print height has been given


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