Europe to Change Juice Labeling Rules

December 19, 2011

The European Parliament has voted in favor of new juice rules aimed at protecting consumers from “potentially misleading names for mixed juices and ‘no added sugar’ claims.”

The European Parliament has voted in favor of new juice rules aimed at protecting consumers from “potentially misleading names for mixed juices and ‘no added sugar’ claims.”

Under the new rules, juices containing more than one fruit source will be required to identify that fruit source in the product name. For example, if a product marketed as orange juice contains mandarin juice, mandarin must be included in the product’s name. Products containing several fruit sources may opt to use generic names like “Mixed juice.”

“No added sugar” claims will be prohibited on juices and nectars containing any added sugars or sweeteners. In order to avoid “potential confusion,” the European Parliament further ruled that sugar-free artificial sweeteners, such as saccharin, would also be prohibited from this type of claim.

The new juice and nectar rules are intended to update existing rules first adopted in 2001.

The Parliament’s ruling must be approved by the European Commission before becoming law. Any products placed on the market or labeled before then may remain in commerce for up to three years. Member states will have 18 months to update their national laws.