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Catering

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 3rd May 2011.

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Photo of Mark Spencer Mark Spencer Conservative, Sherwood

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her policy is on the provision of country of origin information on menus in restaurants and cafeterias in Government buildings.

Photo of James Paice James Paice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

There is no legal requirement for restaurants or cafeterias to give country of origin information on menus. However, if they do, it must not mislead.

I have welcomed the introduction, by the food industry, of voluntary principles on country of origin labelling. In the case of caterers, these state that they should be able to provide the origin of the meat, meat products and dairy products either on the menu, on accompanying literature or, at the very least, when the information is requested by the consumer. Among the criteria being considered for the forthcoming Government buying standards for food and catering services is the inclusion of these principles for all central Government catering operations.

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