Ahead of the creation of Scotland’s new food body, Scotland’s Food Minister Richard Lochhead has launched a partnership campaign to drive forward improvement on food labelling. Scottish Government and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) will lead the partnership with industry and consumers, building on FSA’s strong track record of consumer engagement to better understand what really matters to Scottish consumers about food labelling.
Making the announcement Mr Lochhead said: We know Scottish consumers have a strong appetite for home-grown produce – in a recent survey, more than 90 per cent wanted to see Scottish-branded red meat on supermarket shelves. But far too often they simply do not know what they are buying - where it comes from and exactly what it is – and that is not good enough. I will ensure that improving labelling is a priority for Scotland’s new food body, when it is established next year. But in the meantime it is really important that work is taken forward now to address the frustrating and damaging issue of misleading labelling information. That is why I am launching a clear labelling initiative which will involve the Scottish Government working with the Food Standards Agency, industry and, above all, consumers to deliver greater clarity and transparency for the shopper.
“I won’t pre-judge what consumers want to see on food labels. But I want to make sure the shopper on the High Street knows with certainty that what says Scottish is actually Scottish – there is no ‘small print’ hiding away the true origin of the food they purchase. I am absolutely determined to tackle the scourge of misleading information. It’s not complicated, it’s incredibly simple; consumers must know what they are eating and where it comes from.”