New legislation launched by French MPs hits vegetarian meat

By Ashley Williams

- Last updated on GMT

The French Government want to stop plant-based products using meat-related terms
The French Government want to stop plant-based products using meat-related terms

Related tags Beef Lamb Pork Poultry

French politicians have voted in favour of banning food producers from labelling vegetarian-based products as a meat item to avoid confusion among consumers.

Producers across France will no longer will able to describe plant-based meats such as ‘sausages’ or ‘steaks’ that are not solely made of meat.

The regulation was announced by French farmer MP Jean Baptiste Moreau on Twitter, who stated that the amendment of the agricultural bill will “better inform consumers​” and “fight against false claims​” over animal products.

It is important to combat false claims. Our products must be designated correctly: the terms of #cheese or #steak will be reserved for products of animal origin​,” tweeted Moreau.

Moreau is a member of President Emmanuel Macron’s political movement La Republique Marche, which aims to modernise and moralise French politics.

The bill stated that denominations associated with products of animal origin cannot be used to market food products containing a significant proportion of plant-based materials. It added that food producers who failed to abide by the new regulation could face fines.

The ruling will also apply to vegetarian and vegan products across France that describe items as ‘dairy alternatives’.

The amendment of the Agriculture Bill is consistent with the European Court of Justice’s judgement made in June last year that plant-based foods including soya milk and vegan cheese could not be sold in the EU using terms such as milk, butter and cheese.

US producers have called on government to act similarly​, with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the National Farmers Union both writing to the USDA on the issue.

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