Promoting balanced diets and healthy lifestyles

In today’s fast-developing society, changing eating habits and increasingly sendentary lifestyles have contributed to growing levels of obesity and noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in the European and global population. As one of the key stakeholders, FoodDrinkEurope – representing Europe’s diverse food and drink industry – has committed itself to play its part in contributing to tackle these challenges by promoting balanced healthy diets and lifestyles.

Consumer information

In order for consumers to make informed decisions about their diet and nutrition, they have to know what they are eating and drinking. Europe’s food and drink manufacturers are therefore providing factual information about amongst others ingredients, nutritional value, allergens, beneficial health properties, etc. This is often provided ‘on-pack’ but increasingly also via alternative communication channels (e.g. dedicated websites, social media, smart phone applications).

Legal Framework

EU Regulation 1169/2011 establishes the legal framework for the provision of food information provided to consumers by food business operators. It sets down the general principles, responsibilities as well as requirements aimed at achieving clear, comprehensible and legible labelling of foods.

Furthermore, EU Regulation 1924/2006 provides for a list of authorised health claims, which have received a positive scientific evaluation from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). An example is: “Calcium and vitamin D are needed for normal growth and development of bone in children”. Also nutrition claims such as “source of fibre” and “reduced sugars” are regulated in the EU, ensuring that the consumer is not misled.

FoodDrinkEurope Actions

The next tabs in this section provide a flavour of the actions FoodDrinkEurope is promoting to further improve consumer information as well as education throughout Europe.