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NZ: Consultation on food labelling

Do you have  ideas on how to improve food labelling in New Zealand?  If so, now is the time to share them.

A panel overseeing a review of food labels in Australia and New Zealand is about to start public consultations.  It has released a consultation paper and there will be two public meetings in New Zealand:  Wellington on 25 March and Christchurch on 26 March.  The panel will report back to the Food Regulation Ministerial Council later this year.  New Zealand is represented on the Council.

Register to attend one of the meetings

Read the Food Labelling Review Issues Consultation Paper

The closing date for written submissions is 14 May 2010.

FOE feels strongly that the current system of food labelling is confusing and misleading.  We  support a traffic-light food labelling system.  This would make it easy for busy shoppers to distinguish more healthy from less healthy food.

The review process provides the best opportunities New Zealanders are likely to have for some time to influence developments in food labelling.

The consultation paper poses a series of questions relevant to the review.  First, and crucial, is

“To what extent should the food regulatory system be used to meet broader public health objectives?”

Public health is taken to include health promotion – activities designed to inhibit chronic disease by promoting healthy eating and physical activity.

An evidence-based approach is promised.  So it is up to people wanting to promote public health through food labelling to draw the relevant evidence to the attention of the panel.

Read more about FOE’s position on traffic light food labelling .

Read more about the consultation: Ausfoodnews, 26 Feb 2010

Published on March 11, 2010 in New Zealand news