Food Law News - UK - 2003
FSA Consultation Letter, 18 February 2003
COMPOSTIONAL STANDARDS - Fruit Juices and Fruit Nectars (England) Regulations
These proposed Regulations are intended to apply only to fruit juices and fruit
nectars in England. Parallel amending Regulations will apply in Scotland, Wales
and Northern Ireland.
Consultation details - Fruit Juices and Fruit Nectars (England) Regulations
The Fruit Juices and Fruit Nectars Regulations 1977 (as amended) implemented
Council Directive 93/77/EEC. Council Directive 2001/112/EC relating to fruit
juices and certain similar products intended for human consumption was adopted
in Brussels on 20 December 2001. This Directive replaces Council Directive 93/77/EEC
on 12 July 2003.
The Directive requires Member States to bring into force, before 12 July 2003,
the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with
this Directive. The proposed new Fruit Juices and Fruit Nectars (England) Regulations
2003 will meet this requirement.
The marketing of products, which fail to comply with these Regulations, will
be prohibited from 12 July 2004. However, products, which were labelled and
placed on the market (ie ready for sale) before 12 July 2004, in accordance
with The Fruit Juices and Fruit Nectars Regulations 1977 (as amended in 1982,
1991 and 1995), may continue to be sold until stocks run out.
The new legislation will achieve the following objectives:
- Make it easier for consumers to distinguish between fruit juice and fruit
juice from concentrate.
- It will also permit the addition of vitamins and minerals to fruit juice,
which is not allowed under the current Regulations.
- Consumers will have the benefit of being able to buy fruit juice to which
vitamins and minerals have been added. For example, consumption of fruit juices
fortified with calcium may contribute to reaching desirable levels of calcium
intakes by persons who cannot, or choose not to, drink milk for physiological,
taste or ethical reasons. Existing rules on the addition of sugar, acidifying
agents and ascorbic acid will be maintained.
- The incorporation of water-extracted juice will also be permitted in fruit
juice concentrate. Products on the UK market are not likely to change significantly
as some major producing countries, such as the USA, already allow this use
and the current prohibition cannot be enforced effectively. The move will
benefit EU producers by reducing unfair competition, and may result in reduced
costs which may feed through to lower consumer prices. Water-extracted juice
is not permitted in fruit juice that is not from concentrate. The legislation
does allow for the subsequent limitation of certain processes and treatments,
such as the amount of water-extracted juice which can be returned to the fruit
- Avoid infraction proceedings being taken out by the Commission. Failure
to transpose this EU Council Directive into national legislation will result
in this course of action.
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