Allergens and Natasha’s Law: 2022 update – Bar & Kitchen

Allergens and Natasha’s Law: 2022 update

Twelve months after ‘Natasha’s Law’ came into force to protect allergy sufferers, are you still keeping your customers safe?
““Around two million people in the UK live with a food allergy and the implementation of this law has helped create more consistency, ensuring that anyone with an allergy, intolerance or coeliac disease can make safer choices about the food they eat – particularly when purchasing ‘grab and go’ foods””
- Arvind Thandi, Team Leader Food Hypersensitivity at the Food Standards Agency (FSA)

Know the legislation – it’s important!

In October 2021, legislation requiring the labelling of pre-packed for direct sale (PPDS) foods came into effect. This legislation, also known as ‘Natasha’s Law’, followed the death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, who died after eating a pre-packaged baguette, which at the time did not require ingredients labelling. Now, businesses are required to label PPDS foods with the food name and a full list of ingredients, with any of the 14 allergens required to be declared by law, clearly highlighted.

What are PPDS foods?

These are foods packaged on the same site at which they are sold, by the same business, before being offered for sale, where the food cannot be altered without opening the packaging, such as pre-wrapped sandwiches and fast food that is already in packaging before a customer places their order:

  • Sandwiches and bakery products packed on site before a consumer selects or orders them
  • Products pre-packaged on site ready for sale, such as pizza, salads and pasta pots
  • Foods packaged and sold by the same operator at a market stall or mobile site
  • PPDS food provided in schools, care homes or hospitals requires labelling

What else is being done?

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has launched the Speak Up For Allergies campaign to encourage customers to make their food allergy known to food business staff. Research shows that children and young people are at a higher risk of experiencing food allergy reactions and are less likely to tell a café or restaurant about their allergy, particularly if they have eaten there before.

The FSA advises young people to speak up when they visit and order, to make sure their food allergy is fully understood by the person taking the order in the outlet. Let your team know so they can expect these questions from customers.

What about takeaways?

Takeaway and food deliveries sold online, by phone or in person are classed as ‘distance selling’. Natasha’s Law doesn’t apply to them, but allergen information must be made available before the purchase is concluded and at the moment of delivery – in writing (website, catalogue or menu) or orally (face-to-face or phone). Takeaway meals should be labelled clearly so customers know which dishes are suitable for those with an allergy.

Food that isn’t PPDS

  • Food not in packaging or packaged after being ordered by the consumer. It doesn’t require a label with name, ingredients and allergens emphasised, but allergen information must be provided through other means, including orally.
  • Food packed by one business and supplied to another business. This is pre-packed food and must already have full labelling, including the name of the food and a full ingredients list, with allergenic ingredients printed in bold.
Save Article