The UK’s food industry will be required to include clearer information regarding ingredients on product packaging, according to new government rules.

Announced today, the decision comes as part of the Food Information Regulations consultation to change current food labelling rules to help offer consumers more information on food product packaging.

This will include country-of-origin labelling for products containing meat, which will be subject to Commission rules, as well as information on the plant origin of palm oil used and allergen advice.

The government demanded stronger labelling throughout the EU and is now implementing these rules in the UK.

David Heath, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food, said: “The government is tightening up rules to make it easier for shoppers to make more informed decisions for themselves and their families at the tills. We fought long and hard in Europe for more honest labelling, so that people can make up their own minds about what they eat.

“We are making it easier for consumers to know what’s in the food and drink they buy, while at the same time cutting red tape for businesses.”      

The government has said costs will be kept to a minimum to ensure the food industry has a reasonable period of time to implement the changes, which will allow businesses to adopt the legislative requirements into planned re-labelling schedules.

In addition, food firms and interested parties are being asked to come forward and respond to the consultation.