Commission Memo (MEMO/04/128), 28 May 2004
The following items are taken from the information memo giving details of the meeting of the Employment, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection Council taking place on 1 and 2 June.
Health and nutrition claims made on food
Demand for EU legislation on nutrition and health claims has come from right across the spectrum of interested parties - industry, retailers and, most importantly, consumers. In July 2003 the Commission presented a proposal for an EU law which would provide a consistent and rational approach to dealing with such claims (see IP/03/1022). Consumers would be protected from misleading or unsubstantiated claims, while food companies with legitimate claims to make could use them throughout the EU. The outgoing European Parliament did not finalise its first reading opinion on this draft law and the Council could therefore not yet adopt a common position. Nonetheless, a working group of Member State civil servants has continued its examination of the proposed legislation under the Irish Presidency. Ministers will hear a report on the progress made in this working group.
Addition of minerals and vitamins to food
This proposed EU law, presented by the Commission in November 2003 (see IP/03/1516), aims to set detailed rules on the addition of vitamins and minerals to food. A list of approved vitamins and minerals would be defined and minimum and maximum levels for adding them set on the basis of scientific advice. Labelling would show consumers which nutrients have been added to each product. The outgoing European Parliament did not finalise a first reading opinion on this draft law. Nonetheless, a working group of Member State civil servants has been examining the proposed legislation under the Irish Presidency. Ministers will hear a report on the progress made in this working group.