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Declaration of Vegan on packaging

declaration packaging vegan

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#1 Nadim

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 11:43 AM

Hi

 

can someone please confirm if we can write  '' suitable for vegan'' on the food packaging without having certification from vegan society ..? 

 

thanks

 

Nadim



#2 kkalpakidis

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 02:14 PM

Nadim,

 

I would think you do need a certification if you are going to market "vegan friendly". 

 

This website has some information pertaining to vegan foods that may answer some questions you have.

 

https://vegan.org/certification/



#3 pHruit

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 02:24 PM

Hi

 

can someone please confirm if we can write  '' suitable for vegan'' on the food packaging without having certification from vegan society ..? 

 

thanks

 

Nadim

 

I see no reason why you couldn't do this - the specific Vegan Society logo is of course trademarked, so you'd need to be a member of their specific certification scheme to use it, but they don't own the rights to the concept of veganism ;)

As there is no specific legal definition of vegan suitability (the EU has been arguing about the meaning of "vegetarian" since well before veganism achieved sudden popularity so it'll be a while yet...) and no formal regulatory scheme as there is with e.g. organic product, your obligation would be the general requirement to provide accurate information and not to mislead the consumer. If you product is suitable for vegans then there is no reason why you can't state this fact.



#4 kkalpakidis

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 03:05 PM

I see no reason why you couldn't do this - the specific Vegan Society logo is of course trademarked, so you'd need to be a member of their specific certification scheme to use it, but they don't own the rights to the concept of veganism ;)

As there is no specific legal definition of vegan suitability (the EU has been arguing about the meaning of "vegetarian" since well before veganism achieved sudden popularity so it'll be a while yet...) and no formal regulatory scheme as there is with e.g. organic product, your obligation would be the general requirement to provide accurate information and not to mislead the consumer. If you product is suitable for vegans then there is no reason why you can't state this fact.

I would think that if they are just writing "the contents in the packaging are vegan friendly" should not need any form of certification. Veganism is just no animal, insect, or their byproducts. So i would agree with you on that. But if the concept is veganism, might be better to be certified within and ensure customers that the product is vegan. 



#5 pHruit

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 03:30 PM

I would think that if they are just writing "the contents in the packaging are vegan friendly" should not need any form of certification. Veganism is just no animal, insect, or their byproducts. So i would agree with you on that. But if the concept is veganism, might be better to be certified within and ensure customers that the product is vegan. 

 

It's potentially more complex than that, as veganism has rapidly evolved into a broad and variable set of beliefs/aims, ranging from the avoidance of animal derivatives for what are ostensibly environmental reasons, through to the more traditional perspective of being primarily about animal welfare. The latter group would of course also expect a complete absence of any animal testing in relation to the product, which you'd think would be simple, but if you're using e.g. flavourings then here in Europe these may contain components that are subject to the REACH requirements on chemicals, some of which could mandate animal testing. Obviously this isn't directly related to the final product itself, but some would take the view that it is associated with it, and as such, one product could be suitable according to some vegans, but not according to others...

Whilst I'm not a vegan, I have been a vegetarian for around 20 years and thus have some degree of personal interest the area. 

 

I know certification for every type of claim is becoming increasingly popular, and it's perceived as giving consumers more confidence (certainly by those selling the certification services ;) ). In some areas it potentially has some merit too, as if nothing else it guides businesses towards thinking about some fairly key controls where these could be related to food safety - for example, where allergen claims are concerned - or where there are other specific, defined standard such as Kosher or Halal.

For dietary preferences I'm more sceptical, and I really don't believe it provides any greater guarantee than would be achieved simply by meeting existing legal obligations. It may be better from a branding perspective to be able to use the logo that is increasingly widespread and recognisable in the market here, but I see no necessity to do so from a regulatory perspective. It's going a bit reductio ad absurdum, but the potential conclusion of this chain of thought is that any on-pack statement needs to be certified to be trustworthy/valid. Which sounds like a way to generate a hell of a lot of work for QA/QC/regulatory people and make some certification bodies considerably more wealthy, but I'm not sure it will really benefit consumers?

Certified "no added colours", "no preservatives" "made with milk from cows that get to listen to their own iPod" and the plethora of other on-pack claims that we see these days etc seems a bit much?



#6 zanorias

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 04:26 PM

It's potentially more complex than that, as veganism has rapidly evolved into a broad and variable set of beliefs/aims, ranging from the avoidance of animal derivatives for what are ostensibly environmental reasons, through to the more traditional perspective of being primarily about animal welfare. The latter group would of course also expect a complete absence of any animal testing in relation to the product, which you'd think would be simple, but if you're using e.g. flavourings then here in Europe these may contain components that are subject to the REACH requirements on chemicals, some of which could mandate animal testing. 

 

 

I agree, and would say that the meaning of "vegan" would likely change depending on the speaker and their interpretation. I think to some people it is essentially a lifestyle; the other day my partner mentioned a post by someone on instagram who proclaims to be vegan and was promoting a honey they eat because of the bee welfare in this case. To me, there's a contradiction as my background is nutrition so I follow the "dietary" sense of veganism - not eating animals or animal products - so to me honey is not a vegan product, regardless of how well the bees are treated. Obviously some disagree and hence it can be a cloudy subject.

 

The FSA report below is interesting, whilst it focuses on milk, dairy and lactose in regards to labelling and consumer understanding, you can see how similar misunderstandings and interpretations could apply in other areas including vegan.

https://www.food.gov...odlabelling.pdf

 

With regards to your query Nadim, I agree with pHruit; I'm not aware of any regulation that would deny it, as long as you comply with the others regarding information on labelling not being misleading etc. 

 

 

 

 "made with milk from cows that get to listen to their own iPod" 

 

Note the word 'myth' but you never know what the future holds  :cheezy:  I expect BRC will require a risk assessment for it by issue 20.

Also enjoying this luxury is the Wagyu cattle, from which the highly-prized Japanese kobe beef comes from. Popular myth goes that Wagyu cattle are the most pampered of domesticated animals, because their daily routine consists of regular massages, beer drinking, sake baths and listening to relaxing music—all of which help to keep their meat so tender.

https://www.interlud...-music-to-cows/



#7 kkalpakidis

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Posted 15 May 2019 - 06:39 PM

It's potentially more complex than that, as veganism has rapidly evolved into a broad and variable set of beliefs/aims, ranging from the avoidance of animal derivatives for what are ostensibly environmental reasons, through to the more traditional perspective of being primarily about animal welfare. The latter group would of course also expect a complete absence of any animal testing in relation to the product, which you'd think would be simple, but if you're using e.g. flavourings then here in Europe these may contain components that are subject to the REACH requirements on chemicals, some of which could mandate animal testing. Obviously this isn't directly related to the final product itself, but some would take the view that it is associated with it, and as such, one product could be suitable according to some vegans, but not according to others...

Whilst I'm not a vegan, I have been a vegetarian for around 20 years and thus have some degree of personal interest the area. 

 

I know certification for every type of claim is becoming increasingly popular, and it's perceived as giving consumers more confidence (certainly by those selling the certification services ;) ). In some areas it potentially has some merit too, as if nothing else it guides businesses towards thinking about some fairly key controls where these could be related to food safety - for example, where allergen claims are concerned - or where there are other specific, defined standard such as Kosher or Halal.

For dietary preferences I'm more sceptical, and I really don't believe it provides any greater guarantee than would be achieved simply by meeting existing legal obligations. It may be better from a branding perspective to be able to use the logo that is increasingly widespread and recognisable in the market here, but I see no necessity to do so from a regulatory perspective. It's going a bit reductio ad absurdum, but the potential conclusion of this chain of thought is that any on-pack statement needs to be certified to be trustworthy/valid. Which sounds like a way to generate a hell of a lot of work for QA/QC/regulatory people and make some certification bodies considerably more wealthy, but I'm not sure it will really benefit consumers?

Certified "no added colours", "no preservatives" "made with milk from cows that get to listen to their own iPod" and the plethora of other on-pack claims that we see these days etc seems a bit much?

I appreciate the information. Next time around I will definitely do more research on the topic. 







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