Food & Nutrition Newsletter – Ever been fooled by soy milk?

This month we come to you with a fresh look and feel that reflects on our wider company re-brand. We are pleased to introduce Whitehouse Communications, a new brand identity that reflects the growth in our team and service offering.

Besides a food-heavy Easter, this month we also mark both Earth Day and World Health Day – a whole month dedicated to the three pillars of the Commission’s almost one-year-old Farm to Fork Strategy – food, planet, and health. Perhaps the EU’s plan to reform the continent’s food system was written in the stars all along…

This month the fight for a more sustainable food system in the EU was marked by setbacks – in Brussels, a group of MEPs asked the Commission and the Council to drop new marketing rules for plant-based products, a proposal that had been approved by the European Parliament in October. In Prague, parliamentarians pushed back on a law that would introduce mandatory quotas for nationally produced foodstuffs sold in Czech supermarkets following backlash from other Member States.

Vitamins and supplements are this month’s Easter eggs at the end of the rainbow, as both the Irish and the German health authorities admitted their citizens were not meeting the recommended intake levels for a number of vitamins.  The most notable one being Vitamin D, with Irish authorities recommending citizens to start supplementing and calling for a state VAT cut on Vitamin D pills.

In London, the 1st of April marked the deadline by which cannabidiol (CBD) companies were required to submit their Novel Food Authorisation Applications to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) in order to keep their products on the market. We take a look at developments around the regulatory environment for CBD in the UK in more detail below!

Whitehouse staffer and food policy specialist Saagar Dattani wrote for the Spring 2021 edition of the New Natural Business Magazine, looking at how the government’s proposed restrictions for ‘less healthy’ food, primarily designed to protect children, may inadvertently trap some adult sports nutrition and weight management products. This month the Whitehouse team remembers Dr Ian Gibson, a former Member of Parliament and dedicated food policy campaigner.

You can read this month’s most relevant developments in the food and nutrition space below:

Give soy milk a change, say MEPs: In the European Parliament, a group of over 30 MEPs have written to the European Commission and the Council of the EU calling on the bodies to drop planned restrictions on the marketing of plant-based products, which the Parliament itself had voted to approve in October 2020.

Czech Republic backtracks on domestic goods quotas for supermarkets: After voting in January 2020 to introduce quotas on domestic food sold in Czech supermarkets, lawmakers have backtracked on their plans as EU Member States called on Prague to not threaten Single Market rules.

Europeans need vitamins! The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment has revised the country’s Maximum Permitted Levels for vitamins and minerals, following an assessment which suggests most German citizens do not meet the recommended intake levels for a number of vitamins, including D and B12. Simultaneously, a new report for Ireland’s Joint Committee on Health has found that the vast majority of Irish citizens are vitamin D deficient. To remedy this the Committee calls on citizens to supplement vitamin D into their diets, and calls on the government to eliminate the VAT rate for the food supplement.

Science backs Nutriscore: Hundreds of European scientists and health association experts have signed a petition calling on the EU to adopt the Nutriscore nutritional labelling scheme as the harmonised label across the EU, arguing that this is the best proven scheme according to the scientific community.

You can read this month’s developments in more detail on our Food & Nutrition Newsletter

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If your business needs any support or advice in navigating these policy challenges, or if you have any questions about how these may impact your industry, please do get in touch by contacting Viviana Spaghetti, Director of European Affairs at 

More from Whitehouse on food and nutrition here.