The Netherlands endorses Nutri-Score – TRIS notification

On 4th August 2021, The Netherlands notified to the EU Commission, via TRIS system, the “Regulation of the Minister for Medical Care, designating Nutri-Score as a food choice logo and its conditions of use (Regulation on the designation of food choice logo)”.

In short The Netherlands is endorsing the Nutri-Score French system for the front of pack repetition of the nutrition information. It seems that the system will be voluntary (not mandated on all products by law) and mutual recognition for products legally manufactured and marketed in other Member States will be granted.

The standstill period for comments will end on 5th November 2021.

An extract of the notification:

8. Main Content
This scheme designates Nutri-Score as a food choice logo. Nutri-Score is a voluntary food choice logo for food, which helps consumers make healthier choices when purchasing within a product group. Nutri-Score is established by assigning points for the amounts of protein, fibre, fruit, vegetables, legumes and nuts contained in a food. Points are deducted from this score for the energy content (kilocalories), the quantities of sugars, saturated fat and salt. On the basis of the overall score, a product receives an A, B, C, D or E (from healthy to least healthy). The Nutri-Score logo must be used in accordance with international terms of use. The Dutch translation (which is still under development) will be published on a website to be determined. When using Nutri-Score, food businesses should place the logo on the front of their food. This helps consumers see at a glance which product is the healthier choice.

9. Brief Statement of Grounds
The Netherlands intends to adopt the logo “Nutri-Score” developed by Santé Publice France and registered with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO). Independent consumer research compared three food choice logos currently used in European countries. The extent to which these logos help consumers to make a healthy choice has been examined. The consumer survey shows that with Nutri-Score consumers can best be guided to the healthier choice. In the shop shelves similar products can be compared easily and quickly: at a glance, consumers can see which product is the healthiest choice. This makes the healthy choice the easy choice.
It is not permitted in the European Union to refuse goods lawfully marketed in one Member State in another Member State if the goods do not comply with the national rules of that Member State. Member States may not prohibit the sale of such goods within their territory, provided that such goods offer an equivalent level of protection. This is the principle of mutual recognition, which was incorporated in Article 13d of the Commodities Act in 2015. Paragraph 1 of that article contains a mutual recognition clause for goods for or under the Commodities Act.”

Full draft of the act, the preliminary evaluation and the notification (in all languages) are available here.

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