In addition to ingredients, manufacturer’s details and warnings of possible allergic reactions, consumers can now also find certain quantitative values – known as “Big 7” – on food packaging:
- Energy (calorific value in kcal or kJ)
- Saturated fatty acids
Over and above these details, it is up to manufacturers to add further information if they wish to do so. This may include values such as unsaturated fatty acids, polyhydric alcohols, starch, fibres, vitamins and minerals. All values must be specified as proportions of 100 g or 100 ml. Unlike in the United States, details per serving are not normally provided on packaging. However, if this is done, the size of the serving, too, must be specified clearly. If the composition is simple, involving only a small number of common ingredients, then the relevant nutritional values can easily be identified by the manufacturers themselves, using specific websites. Exceptions
There’s no rule without exceptions. The regulation does not cover small traders who make their own regional specialities and deliver them directly to end customers or retailers within a 100-km radius, and the regulation also exempts online traders with only one member of staff and an annual turnover of less than EUR 2 million. Furthermore, exemptions are permitted for small quantities of packaged food and for unpackaged products made by small food businesses, for instance, bread rolls or fresh meat. However, whenever food is sold ready-packaged, such companies, too, must observe the new regulations.