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These Regulations, which apply to Great Britain, amend the Food Labelling Regulations 1996, as amended. These Regulations provide for the enforcement of Council Regulation (EC) No. 1139/98 concerning the compulsory indication, on the labelling of certain foodstuffs produced from genetically modified organisms, of particulars other than those provided for in Directive 79/112/EEC (regulations 3 and 9).
The products concerned are those which are to be delivered as such to the final consumer, having been produced in whole or in part from genetically modified soya beans or genetically modified maize (Article 1 of Regulation 1139/98 refers). There are transitional provisions in Article 4 of that Regulation in respect of products which are already on the market or which are labelled in accordance with Commission Regulation (EC) No. 1813/97 (OJ No. L257, 20.9.97, p.7).
Regulation 1139/98 was made pursuant to Article 4(2) of Council Directive 79/112/EEC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the labelling, presentation and advertising of foodstuffs (OJ No. L33, 8.2.79, p.1). Pursuant to Article 11 of that Directive, the Regulations–
(a)contain exemptions from the need to be labelled with the particulars required by Regulation 1139/98 in the case of small packages and certain indelibly marked glass bottles, and include a similar exemption in respect of the particulars specified in regulations 33 and 34 of the principal Regulations (relating to foods packaged in certain gases and foods containing sweeteners or added sugars) (regulation 5); and
(b)make provision as to the manner of marking or labelling in the case of the particulars required by Regulation 1139/98 (regulations 6, 7 and 8).
Further to Article 12 of Directive 79/112/EEC, the Regulations–
(a)allow alternative labelling arrangements instead of the particulars required by Regulation 1139/98 in the case of sales to the ultimate consumer by appropriate premises of food which is prepacked for direct sale or not prepacked (regulation 7); and
(b)contain transitional provisions in respect of sales of such food to the ultimate consumer (regulation 12).
These Regulations also make some consequential amendments and some technical amendments in respect of the application of specified provisions of the Food Safety Act 1990 (regulations 4, 10 and 11).
A Regulatory Impact Assessment has been prepared and placed in the Library of each House of Parliament. Copies may be obtained from the Additives and Novel Foods Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Room 239c, Ergon House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR.
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