Self-regulatory proposal from the EU alcoholic beverages sectors on the provision of nutrition information and ingredients listing
Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers exempted alcoholic beverages above 1.2% abv from the mandatory list of ingredients and the nutrition declaration.
As requested in the above-mentioned Regulation, on 13th March 2017, the European Commission issued a report regarding the mandatory labelling of the list of ingredients and the nutrition declaration of alcoholic beverages.
In this report, the European Commission invited the alcoholic beverages industry to respond to consumers' expectations and to present, within a year, a proposal of self-regulation on ingredients and nutritional information that would cover the whole alcoholic beverages sector.
The representative bodies of the European wine, cider, spirits and beer sectors – CEEV, CEVI, EFOW, COPA-COGECA, AICV, spiritsEUROPE and The Brewers of Europe – welcomed the decision of the European Commission to invite the sectors to come up with a self-regulation scheme as it offers the opportunity to identify the best-adapted solutions that would fit both consumers’ needs and our sectors’ characteristics.
After almost a year of collective and constructive discussions, the alcoholic beverages sector has successfully put together a proposal for self-regulation on the information to consumer of the list of ingredients and the nutrition declaration, which was officially presented today, 12th March 2018, to the European Commissioner for Health, Mr Andriukaitis.
The proposed self-regulation contains a common commitment applying to the wine, cider, spirit and beer sectors, and is accompanied and complemented by sectoral annexes laying detailing the process and modalities for its implementation.
Wine sector specificity
The European associations representing the wine sector would like to underline that the wine sector has nothing to hide. Wine is one of the most regulated food products and the detailed and restrictive specific-to-wine legal framework already provides a strong guarantee against consumer deception. It needs to be underlined that micro and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of the EU wine sector, representing more than 90% of the market. In addition, wine is an agricultural product: it changes from year to year depending on the characteristics of the harvest and its composition evolves during its maturation;
It is therefore crucial to develop tools that take into account the specificities of wine and the wine sector and are both manageable by SMEs and relevant and easy to use by consumers.
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