I love buying frozen veges that proudly proclaim to be “Grown in New Zealand”, but there is something mysterious in some of the muesli bars and cookies I found this week.
Integrity is obviously not considered to be an asset in the olive oil business, given the response of the New Zealand Food and Grocery Council to the latest revelations on TV One’s Fair Go programme that most extra virgin olive oils did not meet international EVO standards.
With annual sales of about US$5 billion in 2010/11, Zurich-based Barry Callebaut is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa and chocolate. Callebaut is present in 27 countries, operates around 40 production facilities and employs about 6000 people.
Recent news items about local foods raise an interesting question in this age of demanding food fashions. First there was healthy food, then along came specialist health food, and then food for the dietarily challenged, who have an abnormal reaction to nuts or cheese or meat or gluten, while all the time newly adopted nasties, from saturated fats to sugar and empty calories, gave food choice an extra dimension of danger.
Recent changes in Australia have seen a proposal from Australian government to extend country of origin labelling to unpackaged beef, sheep and chicken meat approved by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ).
The Australian consumer advocacy organisation CHOICE wants all meat products sold in Australia to be subject to the same country of origin labelling as other foods.
The New Zealand Beef and Lamb Quality Mark symbol is only granted to product derived from animals produced in New Zealand.
Woolworths in Australia has committed to labelling all fresh fruit and vegetables in its stores with country of origin labels.
An independent review of food labelling regulations in Australia and New Zealand presented its report to the Australian Federal, State and Territory Governments on Friday, January 28.
Food manufacturers selling their products into EU markets are likely to have a new regime of label regulations governing the source of some of their ingredients. On Friday 10 December the European Commission tabled a proposed regulation that will make country of origin labelling compulsory for some food additives.
The European Union is expected to announce a new agreement that will make compulsory ‘country of origin’ labelling for all lamb sold in Europe.
The British Food and Drink Federation (FDF) has announced that voluntary country of origin labelling for meat has been accepted by all major supermarket chains in the United Kingdom.