Thursday, September 16, 2010

The fight continues...

This week in Brussels I called together a group of health and consumer NGOs who are supportive of using multiple colour coding on food so consumers can ascertain and compare at a glance the nutritional content of food. I convened the meeting following the disappointing vote by MEPs in June.

In attendance were representatives from Which?, the British Heart Foundation, the British Medical Association, Cancer Research UK, BEUC (the European consumers' organisation), the European Heart Network, and a German NGO called Foodwatch as well as Nessa Childers, an Irish MEP colleague of mine and representatives from other MEPs' offices.

We had a very fruitful discussion, and the consensus was that we would continue with a joint campaign to promote colour coding, to lobby Member States in the Council and ensure that traffic lights can at the very least continue to be used throughout Europe as part of national schemes in the current draft legislation on food labelling, as exemplified by the UK's own traffic light scheme.

We also agreed to work together with a view to launching a Citizen's Initiative, once the rules are in place, to gather 1 million signatures from EU citizens, to pressure the Commission to come forward with a separate legislative proposal and build up support and visibility for this important issue.

Watch this space...

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