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Opinion divided over protected food names in EU-US trade talks

Protected Geographical Indications (PGIs) for foods and drinks again emerged as a sticking point in the latest round of trade negotiations between the EU and the US.

‘Southampton’ colour Allura Red safe at current levels, EFSA finds

New exposure data for Allura Red (E129) food colouring suggest that current intakes are safe, according to a revised opinion from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

Guide urges industry action on ‘pirate’ fish

A new guide has urged industry to ensure illegal fish is kept out of supply chains.

Comment

First things first Europe: Set pan-EU max limit for caffeine

Europe must push for united mandatory upper caffeine limits for all products with added caffeine if it is to counter current member state disparity. 

MEPs question European inaction on cholesterol

Two MEPs have asked the Commission to detail its plans to tackle high cholesterol among Europeans, who have the highest levels of bad cholesterol in the world.

Majority MEP vote sends meat origin labelling to the Commission

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have voted by majority to create legislation that could see country of origin labelling used for all meat used in processed foods.

BHF joins calls for caution on controversial back-to-the-80s fat study

The focus of a controversial review on randomised control trials ‘oversimplifies the difficult and complex task of developing evidence-based guidelines on nutrition’, the British Heart Foundation (BHF) has warned. 

Campaigners disappointed by ‘null conclusion’ of UK report on online ads to children

The Children's Food Campaign has said it is disappointed that a UK report on advertising to children failed to bring digital marketing like ‘advergames’ in line with broadcasting rules.

We must unite Fairtrade and trade union movements: Fairtrade CEO

We must follow the example of Sweden and bring together the two “very noisy” movements of workers' trade unions and Fairtrade, the CEO of Fairtrade International Harriet Lamb has said....

EU Commission launches inquiry into Danish fat tax

The European Commission has launched an inquiry to determine whether Denmark’s short-lived ‘fat tax’ constituted illegal state aid for manufacturers who did not have the tax levied on their products....

EU handed protein intake recommendations; no DRVs

Europe’s central food science agency says European adults require on average 0.83 g protein/kg body weight each day from “high quality protein and to protein in mixed diets” in a just-issued...

CAP urges clear labelling of online advergames

Online food and drink advertising rules are sufficient to protect children – but more action is necessary, according to the UK’s Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP).

News in brief

EFSA outlines priorities to 2017

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published its work programme objectives for the next three years, including opinions on acrylamide and caffeine due this year.

TTIP threatens EU food safety and animal welfare standards, claim NGOs

The EU-US trade deal currently under negotiation in Brussels may threaten animal welfare and food safety in Europe, a coalition of NGOs has claimed in a new report.

report calls for tighter regulations on alcohol advertising

Strewth mate! Children are more familiar with Foster’s than ice-cream and biscuit brands

Children are more familiar with alcohol brands such as Foster’s than leading brands of biscuits, crisps, and ice-cream, according to a report from Alcohol Concern in England and Scotland. ...

Commission may face inquiry over alleged TTIP secrecy

The European Commission may face allegations of maladministration over its treatment of requests to access documents related to EU-US trade talks.

Stricter standards and broader scope for Nordic Keyhole label

Sweden’s National Food Association (NFA) has made changes to its Keyhole healthy eating label in light of new nutrition guidelines, meaning less salt, more wholemeal and a broader range of...

Online ‘advergames’ link to child obesity studied

The debate about childhood obesity will intensify tomorrow (February 5) when a comprehensive review of digital and online food and drink marketing to children is published.

EFSA must revise its conflict of interest rules: European Ombudsman

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has been told to revise its conflict of interest rules, after the European Ombudsman received complaints that GM working group members failed to provide full...

Ban energy drink sales to under 18s and energy shots completely, says Foodwatch Germany

The sale of caffeinated energy drinks to under 18s and energy shots in general should not be allowed, according to the German branch of consumer protection group Foodwatch.

Vrai bats off 100% organic criticism: We used what was available

It is not always possible to secure 100% organic raw materials, the French organic yoghurt brand Vrai has said in response to a consumer group campaign against its use of...

Denmark launches ‘most ambitious’ organic plan

The Danish government has announced a plan to double its organic farmland by 2020 and to increase demand for organic food.

Cost, cynicism and frustration: Malaysian government launches own palm oil standard

The Malaysian government has launched its own sustainable palm oil certification standard – but will this add to or detract from sustainability and transparency efforts in the sector?

Russia may lift import ban on some products

Russia may lift its ban on some imported products from Europe, and the Commission has urged in talks this week for Member States to remain unified in their demands.

Organic aroma loophole leaves bad taste

The organic French yoghurt brand Vrai has been forced to pull one of its yoghurts after consumer pressure weighed in on its (legal) decision to use a non-organic aroma.