The Food Standards Agency has issued new guidance on health and identification labelling which must be applied to some food and drink products after the end of the EU transition period.
The health and identification marks, which must be applied to food products of animal origin (POAO) such as meat, egg products, fish, cheese, and milk, will change when the UK’s transition period comes to an end at 11pm on December 31.
From 1 January 2021, POAO produced in GB and exported to the EU and NI markets will require re-labelling with new health and identification marks.
The new FSA guidance – which can be accessed here – details what marks must be used as well as their size and dimensions.
The FSA also says that a 21-month adjustment period has been proposed for goods placed on the market in Great Britain to try to reduce the impact the change will have in the short term and set the deadline for compliance to September 30, 2022 – though it has yet to officially pass into legislation.
A spokesman said: "This will allow UK businesses to deplete existing stocks of labels, wrapping and packaging carrying the ‘UK/EC’ identification mark owned by the food business operator at the end of the transition period.
"The provision will be available to UK food businesses for POAO placed on the market in Great Britain. It is not applicable to POAO produced in the UK for placing on the EU or non-EU markets.
"It is not intended to enable businesses to replenish stocks of labels, wrapping and packaging carrying the ‘UK/EC’ identification mark after the end of the transition period. Businesses are encouraged to adopt the new markings as soon as possible once the transition period ends."
The new guidance also details a series of rules for products placed on the market before the end of the transition period, which vary depending on a series of circumstances.