Packaged Food Labelling
The Food Standards Code requires certain information to be displayed on the label of packaged food for customer awareness and safety. Some of the standard details that you must include on a label:
- Name or description of food.
- List of ingredients descending from biggest to smallest in weight and percentage of key ingredients.
- Name and address of manufacturer and country where it was packaged.
- Food additives and allergens regardless of the quantity, including eggs, nuts, milk, fish, sesame seeds, soy and wheat.
- Weight of product.
- Nutritional information panel.
- Date marking including ‘best before’ and ‘use by’.
- Storage requirements.
- Legal warning statements must be at least 3mm high, except on very small packages.
A complete list of requirements can be obtained from Food Standards Australia New Zealand.
Nutrition Information Panel
The nutrition panel must include information about the levels of energy in kilojoules, protein, total fat, saturated fat, carbohydrates, sugars and sodium in that product. If you are making claims on the label such as ‘high in calcium’ then you must also include the level of calcium in that product.
To calculate the nutrition panel for that product you may choose to use the nutrition panel calculator program on Food Standards Australia New Zealand. Additionally, you may choose to have the product tested by an appropriate analytical laboratory.
Labelling Exception for Community Groups
Community groups are not required to include a nutrition panel or percentage labelling on packaged food for sale. However, information included on the packaging should include the name and address of the community group, a list of the ingredients in that product and a ‘use by’ date or ‘best before’ date.
People involved with catering must either have on display, or be able to provide on request, a written list of ingredients in the food being provided.