Natasha’s Law

  • Published 15th Sep 21
  • Categories Blog

New Food Labelling Requirements

In October 2021 Natasha’s Law, the legacy of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse was introduced requiring food businesses to provide full ingredient lists on foods prepackaged for direct sale on the premises. We are a strong supporter of the new law and firmly believe in the amendment’s potential to protect the lives of allergen sufferers in the UK.

If your school/academy sells or supplies PPDS food you need to take action to comply with the law.

The new rules for PPDS (Pre-packed for Direct Sale) food will have to clearly display the following information on the packaging:

Name of the food.

Full ingredients list, with allergenic ingredients emphasised (for example in bold, italics or a different colour).

This applies to any food business that produces PPDS food, primary and secondary schools, colleges, universities, and nurseries that provide food.

It is understandable that pupils at the younger end of school may not be able to make informed decisions about the food provided to them and that schools will currently have a safeguarding responsibility in respect of this.

However, the changes to PPDS labelling mean that any food that is packed on the same site before being ordered by the consumer will need to provide PPDS labelling.

 

REMEMBER, NATASHA’S LAW IS A LEGAL REQUIREMENT AND NOT SOMETHING THAT CAN BE OPTED OUT OF.

 

Frequently asked questions about PPDS labelling…

 

Do the PPDS changes affect school meals that are plated to order?

No. If you are plating food (not pre-packed before the point that it is ordered) there is no need to list ingredients. You must be able to provide information, via an Allergen Day Matrix form, on the presence of any allergens in the food you are serving.

 

Do the PPDS changes affect packed lunches?

PPDS allergen labelling changes only affect food that is packed and sold or offered at your site.

If the lunches are packed to order, these are not pre-packed, and are therefore not PPDS. If, however, the school lunches are packed without specific orders from individual children, then these would need to comply with the new PPDS labelling requirements.

 

Do the PPDS changes affect school meals ordered by parents on a menu cycle?

This would not be considered PPDS if the food has been ordered before being packaged for the individual. You should continue to make allergen information available to parents and students as you do now.

However, if parents are paying for food in advance and have not made specific orders, the food could be considered PPDS depending on if and how it is packaged before being chosen by a student.

 

Do the PPDS changes affect school meals ordered by parents on a menu cycle?

This would not be considered PPDS if the food has been ordered before being packaged for the individual. You should continue to make allergen information available to parents and students as you do now.

However, if parents are paying for food in advance and have not made specific orders, the food could be considered PPDS depending on if and how it is packaged before being chosen by a student.

 

Do the PPDS changes affect pre-packed tuck that is provided to younger years pupils by the school?

Yes, the changes to PPDS labelling mean that any food that is packed on the same site before being ordered by the consumer will need to provide PPDS labelling.

This includes items wrapped in clingfilm, folded over bags and plastic bags with knots in them.

 

Do I need to label food wrapped in cling film?

If the food is completely or partially enclosed by cling film or other packaging before it is ordered (and is ready for presentation to the consumer), and the food cannot be altered without opening or changing the packaging, then yes it is PPDS food.

If an item is removed from cling film before it is presented to the consumer then this is not PPDS food. This is non pre-packed food and so an Allergen Daily Matrix must be provided.

 

Do I need to label food items if they are sold loose?

Loose food which is not sold in packaging does not require a label. It must meet current allergen information requirements for non pre-packed food – ie; an Allergen Daily Matrix form.

 

Do I need to label food if I prepare and wrap food and keep it under a hot lamp before it is ordered?

Yes, if you pre-pack food in anticipation of consumer orders, these products will require PPDS labelling.

 

Do I need to provide labels for a salad bar or self-service buffet?

If the salad is individually packaged before being ordered, it would require a PPDS food label. However, if the salad bar is self-service, and the student plates it onto a plate or into a box themselves this is non pre-packed food.

Allergen information for non pre-packed food on buffets and salad bars must have an Allergen Daily Matrix form.

 

If I display allergen information on a menu or on our website to inform parents, do I still need to label PPDS food?

Yes, using an allergen information sheet is not a substitute for PPDS food labelling. PPDS food will still require a full ingredients list and allergen information on the label.

 

Do hot drinks, such as tea or coffee, require PPDS labelling?

Hot drinks made to order are not PPDS and do not require PPDS labelling.

But if you pour and lid drinks before consumers order them, in anticipation of a rush, the drinks would be PPDS and would need labelling.

 

 

Need help with your allergen compliance?

CMC can give you advice and support on all aspects of your food safety in school.

Contact us today to see how we can help you.
01254 351887
enquiries@cmcschoolfood.co.uk

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