Regulatory Outlook

Food Law | UK Regulatory Outlook October 2022

Published on 26th Oct 2022

Placement restrictions on HFSS foods come into force | Government guidance updated in line with delay of HFSS promotion restrictions | BRC updates their guidance on which products are in and out of scope of the HFSS

Placement restrictions on HFSS foods come into force

As noted in our previous Regulatory Outlook, there was speculation as to whether the placement restrictions on high fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) foods were going to come into force. However at the end of last month, the UK government introduced a piece of amending legislation which confirmed that the location restrictions were still come into force as planned on 1 October 2022. Businesses must now have implemented measures in line with the location restrictions in order to be compliant with the regulations.

However, the new piece of legislation does set out the delays in the implementation of the volume promotion restrictions that the government had announced in May this year. Read our Insight for more.

Government guidance updated in line with delay of HFSS promotion restrictions

As noted above, legislation was introduced confirming that the volume promotion restrictions on HFSS products will be delayed by a year and will come into force 1 October 2023. In line with this, the government's "Restricting promotions of products high in fat, sugar or salt by location and by volume price" guidance page was updated with a new section, "Transition period for promotions on packaging", which discusses the new timeframes.

It outlines that there is a transition period until 2024, which allows retailers to sell existing stock that was produced before October 2023 with volume price promotions (such as "x% extra") on the packaging that cannot be removed.

After October 2024, if packaging still has volume price promotions, then it must state clearly and prominently that the promotion does not apply in England.

BRC updates their guidance on which products are in and out of scope of the HFSS

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) has updated their category guidance to help businesses further understand which products are in and out of scope of the government's new legislation on high fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) foods promotional restrictions. See our Insight for more details.

The BRC is a trade association which focuses on helping businesses in the retail industry with navigating topics such as new legislation.  The updated guidance is as a result of BRC reaching out to the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for clarifications on behalf of its members.  Conversations are ongoing so it is understood that the guidance will be under ongoing monthly review. See our Insight for more.

FSA to provide clarity to edible insect industry 

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) launched a consultation in July 2022 with regard to a proposed amendment to retained EU legislation that provides for a transitional period under the novel food regulations for edible insects.

The FSA has now, on 3 October, published the responses to the consultation and has outlined that legislation will be drafted to implement the proposals to allow eligible edible insects to remain on the market.

After 31 December 2023, only those edible insect species that are subject to an application for novel food authorisation submitted to the appropriate GB authorities the (FSA and Food Standards Scotland) will be permitted to remain on the market.

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* This article is current as of the date of its publication and does not necessarily reflect the present state of the law or relevant regulation.

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