Mandatory calorie labelling to come into force in 2022

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The Calorie Labelling (Out of Home Sector) England) Regulations 2021were passed by Parliament on 27 July 2021 and require restaurants, cafés and takeaways in England with 250 or more employees to list calorie counts on non-prepacked food and soft drinks. All calorie information will need to be displayed at the point at which the consumer chooses what food to buy, such as physical and online menus and delivery platforms.

The information which must be displayed is:

  • the energy content of a single portion of food in kilocalories or, if the item purchased by the customer has been prepared by the business for consumption by more than one person, of the whole item;
  • the size of the portion to which the information above relates, or the number of people for whom the item has been prepared;
  • the statement that “adults need around 2000 kcal a day” (unless the menu only includes food for children).

The regulations include a provision allowing customers to receive a menu without calorie labelling if expressly requested by the customer.

The following businesses are exempt from the regulations:

  • educational institutions;
  • work-place canteens;
  • military establishments and criminal justice accommodation;
  • hospitals;
  • care homes and other social care settings.

WM comment

The regulations come into force in April 2022. Catering businesses need to begin to plan for the changes.