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The Visible Value Blog

Updated: New labelling regulations: food for thought

Posted by Zebra EMEA

July 3, 2014 at 9:31 AM


Did you know that from December 2014, you could be breaking the law – simply by continuing to list the allergens separately to the ingredients list.

That’s because new European legislation states that from 13 December 2014, anyone packaging edible goods must highlight whether this food contains any of the 14 allergens (cereals containing gluten, crustaceans, eggs, fish, peanuts, soya bean, milk, nuts, celery, mustard, sesame, sulphur dioxide, lupin and molluscs), which should now be named within the list of other ingredients.

This legislation aims to make allergens more legible and prominent on food packaging, and thereby limit the number of allergic reactions suffered by misinformed consumers.

We know what you’re thinking – this change in legislation is sure to prove a logistical nightmare for your business. Not only will you need to identify the 14 allergens within each of your products, but you’ll also need to automatically combine this allergen information with the rest of the ingredients in the product, and somehow make this particular information stand out before printing it onto new labels and relabelling all of your existing stock.

But with 17 million Europeans suffering from food allergies, this legislation is important, and will no doubt benefit them.

Also, believe it or not, the change doesn’t necessarily complicate the way you package your products. Zebra can make things easier by providing the technology to make this change quickly, affordably and efficiently. Visit our website find out more.

If you live in the UK, you can still have your say in the second phase of the public consultation on the change in legislation. Click here to find out about the consultation process, and to get in touch if you so wish.

Find out more about the change in labelling legislation and how it could affect you here.


The deadline for compliance is just around the corner – time is running out to implement a solution. To help you be compliant sooner take a look at some options below:

A complete solution for food labelling compliance comprises a printer, labelling software and suitable media. For organisations producing static product labels – especially the new requirement for ‘source’ information on meat and other animal products in retail - ZebraDesignerPro provides a simple and cost effective solution. 

Users who are managing dynamic labelling and need to highlight allergens in their ingredients list should take a look at Zebra Partner NiceLabel who provides software which enables a smooth and easy upgrade path for ZebraDesigner users. NiceLabel software loads ZebraDesigner format files and is compatible with Zebra’s Windows drivers.

Other software solutions are available from Zebra Partners, Loftware and Seagull Scientific (BarTender®).

ISV Partners:



Seagull Scientific

Useful regional information can be found from local foods standards agencies – click here for more information.

David Taylor, Business Development Manager – Manufacturing 

Topics: Barcodes, Manufacturing, EMEA, Ambiente Link OS, Industry News