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Unclear country of origin labelling confusing consumers at major supermarkets

Pig products were found labelled with more than one country of origin or simply labelled as EU.



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Unclear country of origin labelling confusing consumers

Retailers have been accused of showing ‘little care’ on country of origin labelling for anything other than fresh meat and milk, creating confusion for shoppers.

 

Farming unions have called on retailers to make labelling more transparent after NFU Scotland’s Shelfwatch found pig products labelled with more than one country of origin or simply labelled as ‘EU’ at major supermarkets.


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NFUS called on the retailers to follow the lead of Marks and Spencer, Co-op and Waitrose, who offered 100 per cent British pork, bacon and gammon, with clear labelling.

 

Food chain policy manager Lindsey Macdonald said consumers should not have to search the small print to make an informed decision about what they buy.

 

Fake farms

 

She added the fake farm branding remained a ‘huge problem’ with Tesco’s Woodside Farm brand found to be from various countries around the EU.

 

NFU food chain adviser Helen Hunt said, with Brexit, clear country of origin had never been so important.

 

She said, in general, retailer own branded products were following voluntary principles committing to clear country of origin labelling and the origin of meat and milk was labelled.

 

But many other products were not.

 

“Not all manufacturers are covered by these principles and we have many examples of branded products where the country of origin is either not labelled or states meat from the EU’.”

 

She added France, Lithuania, Portugal, Italy, Finland and Greece were ‘ahead of the UK’ and were trialing mandatory labelling of meat and milk as an ingredient.

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