At a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Cheese last week, trade association Dairy UK argued that the current regulatory situation allows some cheese manufacturers to mislead consumers about the origins of their products.
Jim Begg, Dairy UK director general, explained the problem. “At present, a product such as cheddar cheese might be labelled with the name and address of a UK seller, carry a UK identification mark because it is cut and wrapped in the UK, and yet have been produced in another Member State, with no indication on the label to this effect.”
Speaking on behalf of the Dairy UK cheese Group, First Milk sales and marketing director added: “Although the current legislation requires origin to be included on pack, in practice consumers can be misled.
“Our view is that consumer requirements for cheese can only be met by mandatory arrangements that recognize the place of manufacture of the product.”
Qualifying what legislative help Dairy UK is calling for, Begg said: “We’re looking for a simple solution to resolve this issue. You don’t need a sledgehammer to crack a nut. But we do think that a mandatory element is necessary to be effective.”