The Finnish Food Authority’s Food guide for Finnish food inspectors and food business operators (Elintarviketieto-opas) was updated in April and it provides information on when and how to indicate the origin of meat and how foodstuffs should be named.
For bovine, pork, sheep, goat and poultry meat (also minced meat) used as a meal component in restaurants and other catering, the country of origin (country in which the rearing took place) must be provided in writing to consumers with effect from 1 May 2019. This is laid down in the new Act 154/2019 by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland. The Act enters into force in the beginning of May and is valid for two years, until the end of April 2021.
The Act concerns fresh, chilled and frozen meat, but not meat preparations or products, e.g. ready minced meat patties and readily marinated meat products. The country of origin can be indicated e.g. as follows: “chicken breast fillet (Finland)” or “chicken breast fillet (non-EU)” if the specific country is not known. The information on the country of origin can be provided on the menu or, for instance, on a board or a computer, given that the information is available to the consumer prior to purchase decision. The Act also covers takeaway food and meals supplied through distance selling.
The Finnish Food Authority recently published an updated guide for Food information. The revised guide comprises the most recent legislation, including the Act on indication of the country of origin of meat. Furthermore, the guide is packed with practical examples to help food business operators on a broader spectrum; for example, naming of foodstuffs is described in greater detail than previously.
Do you need help with indicating the country of origin of meat at restaurants or serving areas, or assistance in creating package labels?
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