It’s October 2021, and Natasha’s Law is now in effect throughout the United Kingdom. So, to help your operation stay up to code, we’re providing a brief overview of what you need to know about Natasha’s Law.
Here are the basics.
Like any law, Natasha’s Law gets complicated when you read every last line. But if you stick to the basics, it’s simple.
Here are the three main points to keep in mind with Natasha’s Law: If you sell prepackaged food for direct sale (aka PPDS food), you must include a label that:
- Shows the name of the food.
- Lists the ingredients in volume order.
- Highlights any of the 14 allergen types listed under Natasha’s Law, which you can do by writing the listed allergen in bold letters.
Those are the main points you want to keep in mind with Natasha’s Law. Food needs labelling, and those labels need to include allergens listed in volume order and in bold text. That’s the law in a nutshell.
So, what specific allergens need listing according to Natasha’s Law?
What are the 14 allergens specified in Natasha’s Law?
In case you’re wondering what they are, we listed the 14 allergens specified under Natasha’s Law. Download it, print it out and hang it up as a friendly reminder for you and your colleagues. Having the allergens listed in plain sight will help your team memorise and label these ingredients properly.
What does Natasha’s Law mean by food that is “prepacked for direct sale”?
As mentioned before, Natasha’s Law requires the labelling of foods that are “prepacked for direct sale,” or “PPDS” for short. So, how can you tell if a food is PPDS?
The distinguishing feature of PPDS food is that it’s prepared, packaged and sold to customers all at the same location. Here are a few examples of food that qualifies as PPDS:
- Fast food that gets packaged or wrapped before a customer orders it. That could mean a burger under a hot lamp or any food you cannot consume without opening its packaging.
- Products that get prepackaged and put out for direct sale at the same location. Think of food that goes in grab-and-go style delis and displays. These products could include rotisserie chickens, salads, burritos, sushi, pasta pots and pizzas.
- Sausages or burgers that a butcher prepackages on-premise before selling to customers at the same location
- Prepackaged food served in care homes, schools, hospitals and other similar places
- Cookies or desserts that were packed on site, later removed from their packaging and then offered to customers as samples
- Bakery items, sandwiches and other products packaged on-site before being ordered by a customer
- Foods that were packaged and then sold at another location by the same vendor/business
If you’re not sure whether a food qualifies as PPDS, ask yourself the following questions:
- Was it prepared and packaged on location?
- Does the customer have to unwrap the food to consume it?
If you answer “yes” to both questions, then the food in question likely qualifies as PPDS. In this case, label it according to the standards outlined in Natasha’s Law.
What food does not qualify as PPDS?
- Food that gets packaged by one business and given to another business doesn’t qualify as PPDS. This type of prepacked food must include full labelling. That includes the name of the food and a complete list of ingredients. Ingredients lists must emphasise all allergenic ingredients.
- Any food not contained within packaging and also food packaged after the consumer orders it. These non-prepacked foods do not require a label with name, allergens and ingredients emphasised. Businesses must still provide proper allergen information to the consumer. They can do this verbally or through other means, such as a physical menu.
- The new labelling requirements do not apply to PPDS food sold through distance selling. That includes food purchased over the internet, a delivery app or phone. However, customers must have access to a list of allergens at the time of delivery, which means it’s best to label food items before they leave your business—regardless of who delivers them.
Businesses selling PPDS food in the ways listed above will need to ensure that their customers have access to mandatory allergen information before purchasing products. Customers must also have allergen information given to them at the point of delivery.
Worried about compliance? No need to stress
Still feeling uncertain about Natasha’s Law? Looking for an easy way to help you comply? No need to worry. We can help.
Our DateCodeGenie® automated labelling system allows you to design and print the labels your organization needs to stay up to code with Natasha’s Law.
For more information or a product demonstration, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.