The issue of prescribed weight legislation – including bread weights – was due to be voted on in the European Parliament as British Baker went to press.

Trade bodies, including the Federation of Bakers (FoB), are battling against the draft EU Nominal Quantities Directive, which suggests deregulating weight legislation, including the current UK system of selling bread above 300g in set weights of 400g, 800g and 1,200g.

They argue that deregulation will cause confusion among consumers, because no specific measurements will be required by law. For example, one retai-ler could sell a 400g loaf, another a 380g, for the same price.

FoB director Gordon Polson told British Baker he was “reasonably confident” the European Parliament would vote in favour of allowing the various European nations to keep their own weights legislation. In December, the EU Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee voted to exclude bread and other staples from the legislation. The issue is due to be voted on by MEPs on February 2.