Free webinar to tackle FIR questions

By Michael Stones

- Last updated on GMT

Dominic Watkins is on the panel
Dominic Watkins is on the panel

Related tags Drink manufacturers Food and drink Label Nutrition Premier foods Dominic watkins

Food and drink manufacturers now have less than a year to plan their response to the Food Information Regulation (FIR) – due to be enforced on December 14 2014 – but Food Manufacture’s free, one-hour webinar next month will provide timely advice.

Expert speakers taking part in the webinar – to be staged in association with law firm DWF – will provide the latest guidance on how the legislation will affect food and drink manufacturers and how they should respond. The panel will include Alasdair Tucker, head of regulatory affairs at Premier Foods, and Dominic Watkins, partner and head of the food group at DWF.

Watkins said it was important that all food and drink businesses ensured they complied with the new legislation as soon as possible. But he acknowledged the scope of the challenge.

‘Simple answer’

“The simple answer is for firms to put a plan in place for their labels to be compliant by December 2014,”​ he said. “The practicality of this is somewhat more challenging and requires some planning as changing labels usually has a significant lead time and food businesses need to be looking at labels to determine how they can be adapted to reflect the new rules.”

A good way to deal with the changes was to plan a packaging rebrand, relaunch or change for late 2014, he said. “This gives a great opportunity to lessen the cost impact of making the changes.”

For larger food firms with many products, Watkins acknowledged this can be time-consuming, as each label must be checked and compliance ensured. “It will take a significant amount of time to complete the project and therefore it is strongly advisable to start this sooner rather than later,”​ he added.

Nutrition labelling requirements

In addition to the changes due to be enforced on December 14 this year, food and drink manufacturers should also be preparing for nutrition labelling requirements, which come into force on December 14 2016.

Meanwhile, the webinar, which starts at 11am on Thursday February 20 2014, will also feature a presentation about how Premier Foods is planning to mitigate the impact of the changes.

To register for the webinar email zvpunry.fgbarf@jeoz.pbz

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