The Labelling of Food Order, 1944, which has been made by the Minister of Food under Regulation 2 of the Defence (Sale of Food) Regulations, 1943, implements the policy set out in the White Paper on the Labelling and Advertising of Foods (Cmd. 6482). The Order details the general requirements which must be met by the labels of all pre‐packed foods, and also the special rules which will apply to both labels and advertisements claiming the presence of vitamins or minerals in any food. In order to give time for amendment of labels, the Order does not come into force until January 1st, 1945. The principal requirement is that the labels of pre‐packed foods sold by retail must show: (1) the name and address in the United Kingdom of the packer or labeller, or of the person on whose behalf the food is packed or labelled. Alternatively, the label may bear a registered trade mark. The labels of imported pre‐packed foods may specify instead the name and address of the importer; (2) the common or usual name (if any) of the food; (3) in the case of foods containing more than one ingredient, the common or usual names of the ingredients of the food in the order of the proportions in which they were used; (4) the minimum quantity of food in the package. A number of foods, however, are exempted from these requirements. In particular, the ingredients need not be disclosed in the case of certain foods if their composition complies with the requirement of Orders made by the Minister of Food prescribing standards made under Regulation 2 of the Defence (Sale of Food) Regulations, 1943, e.g., mustard, self‐raising flour, shredded suct, baking powder and golden raising powder. The manufacturer or the packer will normally be the person who labels the food with the above information, but provision is made to allow traders dealing in food otherwise than by retail to sell the food unlabelled. In this case they must furnish the purchaser with a statement enabling him to label the food in accordance with the Order. For the purpose of this provision, the application of a code mark to a container does not constitute labelling. Special requirements in addition to those mentioned above apply to labels and advertisements when claims are made to the presence of vitamins or minerals in a food. General claims are only permitted when specified vitamins or minerals are present, and the proportion has to be stated in the manner prescribed. Claims relating to the presence of a particular vitamin or mineral specified must also be supported by a quantitative disclosure. Provision is made so that a prosecution for weights and measures offences shall not be based on the contents of only a single sample, while bona fide mistake, accident and loss due to evaporation are defences to such an action. It is a defence to proceedings under the Order to show that the food was sold bearing the same label as when received by the seller, or alternatively that it was labelled in accordance with the statement supplied to the seller when he purchased it. In accordance with the provisions of the Defence (Sale of Food) Regulations, 1943, proceedings under the Order by Food and Drugs Authorities other than in respect of weights and measures offences may only be instituted with the Minister's prior consent. Correspondence with reference to the Order should be addressed to the Ministry of Food, Mussoorie, Kenelm Road, Colwyn Bay.
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