FSANZ propose to extend meat labelling standards

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 25th July 2011

Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) have proposed to extend country of origin labelling to unpackaged beef, sheep and chicken meat. Currently, only some unpackaged foods require country of origin labelling: pork, fish, fruit and vegetables.

The proposal follows changes in the rules for beef imports that were made in 2010.

“The change caused concern among consumers about identifying the origin of unpackaged beef,” said Steve McCutcheon, Chief Executive Officer of FSANZ.

“Information received to date indicates costs relating to the change in labelling of unpackaged beef, sheep and chicken meat are unlikely to be substantial, with some major retailers already labelling products voluntarily.”

Mr McCutcheon said that a recommendation on the proposal will go to the FSANZ board late 2011, after addressing public submissions.

The FSANZ proposal comes ahead of action on the final report of Dr Neal Blewett’s Review of Food Labelling Law and Policy, which is still being considered by the Federal Government.

Recommendation 40 of that report calls for the extension of country-of-origin food labelling standards to all primary food products sold in Australia.

The full report can be read here.