Pubs that label and sell produce need to make sure they follow guidance on food and drink labelling in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

The guidance has been issued by the government as the UK counts down to Brexit day on March 31.

The government said that food businesses have a 21-month transition period for the most significant changes to food labels, but in the event of no deal Brexit there are some technical changes to labels that will be required from day one.

For products placed on the UK market after 29 March 2019, these changes include:

 

  • The EU emblem must not be used on goods produced in the UK unless a company has been authorised by the EU to do so;
  • The EU organic logo must not be used on any UK organic products, unless the UK and EU reach an equivalency arrangement – where both still recognise each other's standards - before exit day; and
  • It will be inaccurate to label UK food as origin 'EU'.

 

The government also said that "additional information such as signage and online information will help clarify to the consumer the origin of the food".

It said that enforcement officers would take a "pragmatic approach" to enforcement of food origins, and understood the challenge around the scale of labelling changes required.

A 21 month transition period has been agreed to give businesses more time to make other labelling changes, such as ensuring there is a UK address for the responsible food business operator or importer on the label.

There will also be a three-year transition period for the new UK Geographical Indication Schemes logo. The new UK logo will be available from March 29, so there is the the option to make labelling changes before the end of the adoption period.