New allergen regulation comes into force
Big changes to the information that any establishment that serves food must give to their customers - EU FIC comes into force on the 13th of December 2014 – Be prepared
Any establishment that serves food including restaurants, hotels, B&Bs, guesthouses, cafes or attractions need to be aware and ready to answer questions regarding allergens when the new regulations are enforced later this year.
The legislation states that business’s must be able to say if a particular dish or product contains any one of the 14 allergens, they are: milk, eggs, fish, peanuts, celery, mustard, sesame, soybeans, cereals containing gluten, crustaceans, molluscs, lupin (sometimes found as flour in baked goods) and significant levels of sulphur dioxide, used as a preservative.
Once the rule is in force, staff must be able to say if a particular dish or product contains any one of the allergens if asked. There must also be a written label, notice, menu or ticket which clearly states that allergen information can be obtained by asking a member of staff.
Giving inaccurate or incomplete information about allergens in foods sold would be a breach of the regulation and you could be issued with an improvement notice if they have reasonable grounds for believing that the business is failing to comply with the provision.
If a business is found guilty of any offences in relation to the FIC (Food Information for Consumers Regulation) they could be liable to a fine of up to £5000 per charge.
Business owners who are unsure about the rules and how they might be affected should make sure they take advice, please see government guidelines