The Commission position is quite clear. The logo will not be harmonized, for now.
Question for written answer to the Commission – Marc Tarabella (S&D)
24th July 2014
Subject: Gluten-Free Logo
Approximately 1 in 300 Europeans suffers from some kind of gluten intolerance.
The regulations which currently govern the labelling of gluten-free products (Regulation (EC) No 41/2009, Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 and Regulation (EU) No 609/2013) state that staple foods which are suitable for persons with a gluten intolerance can be labelled ‘gluten-free’.
Current legislation does not, however, make it mandatory to provide this information in the form of a logo, which would help consumers to identify gluten-free products more easily.
Several countries, including Spain, have introduced logos of this kind, but, as their use is not regulated by EC law, they are not standardised at EU level and do not necessarily mean the same thing. Accordingly, consumers in different Member States do not have access to the same information on gluten-free products, and they do not know whether or not they can trust all these different logos.
Does the Commission intend in the near future to propose legislation introducing a standard EU ‘gluten-free’ logo and making its use on all relevant products mandatory?
Regulation (EC) No 41/2009 lays down rules concerning the composition and labelling of foodstuffs suitable for people intolerant to gluten and establishes conditions for foods to be labelled as ‘gluten-free’ and ‘very low gluten’. The harmonisation of the rules on the use of these statements ensures the free movement of goods in the EU and guarantees that consumers are not confused or misled by different types of product descriptions used on foods at national level.
Answer given by Mr Borg on behalf of the Commission – 2nd September 2014
Regulation (EU) No 609/2013 will repeal Regulation (EC) No 41/2009 with effect from 20 July 2016 and foresees that the latter’s rules should be transferred under Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011.The transfer of the rules of Regulation (EC) No 41/2009 has been recently completed by Implementing Regulation (EU) No 828/2014.
The use of logos on products labelled ‘gluten-free’ is not harmonised by Regulation (EC) No 41/2009 and will not be harmonised by Regulation (EU) No 828/2014 which was adopted in order to transfer the existing rules. Rules adopted at national level on such logos should be notified to the Commission and comply with relevant EU rules, including those of the Treaty.
To date, no information has been made available to the Commission on the use of such logos at national level. In particular, there is no data on how their use influences the intended consumers’ purchasing behaviour, especially their understanding of the relevant information and their ability to identify gluten-free products more easily.
Given the above, the Commission does not currently intend to harmonise the use of ‘gluten-free’ logos in the EU.
(Source: European Parliament website)