Hi our company, occasionally create surplus food, which at the moment is thrown away. We would like to give it away for free, what are the labeling requirements (UK food manufacturer) We would put the surplus food in CPET trays and seal with a top film (we are a ready meals factory)
I have suggested to the directorship, that as it is considered pre-packaged food, it would have to comply with the Food Information to Consumers regulations (EC 1169/2011).
What does everyone else think, is there an exception for surplus food??
Any help would be welcome
I agree with you. For me, Article 1(3) should be relevant here: This regulation shall apply to food business operators at all stages of the food chain, where their activities concern the provision of food information to consumers. It shall apply to all foods intended for the final consumer, including foods delivered by mass caterers, and foods intended for supply to mass caterers.
Whilst there may be a bit of room to interpret exactly what the "consumer" is here (e.g. is it the person that eats the food, or is it someone who purchases it, or both?), Article (2)(1) points towards 178/2002 as the source of the definition for "Final Consumer", and I think it's therefore entirely reasonable to infer that this is concerned with the person consuming the food, even if not necessarily buying it. Otherwise the food safety elements of 178/2002 wouldn't apply to baby food, since babies have very little purchasing power
In your position I'd stick a basic black & white label on with the normal nutritional, ingredient, allergen etc details on.
Are you distributing the product yourself, or will it be going through one of the redistribution charities? You could always check with them as to their requirements/guidance.
May also be worth getting in touch with someone like https://www.wrap.org.uk/, who do have labelling guidelines for surplus food, but they're pretty much solely focussed on shelf life.