FOREIGN AGRICULTURAL SERVICE
The maximum tolerable error between the actual content and the quantity indicated on the label and reference methods to check this are fixed in Council Directive 76/211/EEC, as amended. A small "e" of at least 3 mm on the label guarantees that the actual content corresponds to the quantity indicated.
The size of the figures indicating the quantity depends on the nominal quantity:
Directive 2007/45/EC abolishes regulations on mandatory pack sizes at both EU and national levels. The Directive frees sizes for all prepackaged products except wine and spirits, coffee and white sugar. Member States in which mandatory nominal quantities are prescribed for milk, butter, dried pasta and coffee may maintain their restrictive rules until October 2012. The rules for white sugar may be maintained until October 2013. Mandatory nominal quantities for wines and spirits are set out in the Annex to Directive 2007/45/EC.Materials in Contact with Foodstuffs
European Parliament and Council Regulation 1935/2004 specifies the main requirements for materials that come into contact with foodstuffs, including active and intelligent packaging. It also sets out labeling and traceability requirements and the procedure for the authorization of substances through the European Food Safety Authority. Additional requirements will be proposed in specific measures and will include positive lists of authorized substances and/or materials. Annex I to Regulation 1935/2004 lists the group of materials for which specific measures may be adopted. Commission Regulation 2023/2006 lays down rules on good manufacturing practice for food contact materials listed in Annex I to Regulation 1935/2004. To date, specific directives have been developed for vinyl chloride, plastics, recycled plastic materials, regenerated cellulose film, ceramics and the use of certain epoxy derivatives in plastic materials, surface coatings and adhesives. In the case of ceramics, migration limits have been established for two of their constituents, namely lead and cadmium. Materials must bear an indication "for food contact" or the symbol reproduced in Annex II to Regulation 1935/2004. Commission Regulation 450/2009 establishes specific rules for active and intelligent packaging. EFSA has published guidelines on "active and intelligent" substances in food contact materials.
Exporters are advised to verify if a Member State follows EU provisions as Member States are allowed to authorize provisionally the use of certain substances not listed in one of the specific directives. They may also restrict or temporarily prohibit the use of certain materials authorized by the specific directives for reasons of public health.
Food Contact Materials - Active and Intelligent
Packaging (GAIN report E34103 - December 2004)
More information on food contact materials is available on the Joint Research Center's website at http://cpf.jrc.it/webpack.Packaging Waste Management
Member States are required to take measures to prevent the formation of packaging waste and must introduce systems for reuse, recovery and recycling of packaging materials (Council Directive 94/62/EC). Commission Decision 2001/524/EC relates to the publication of references for certain EN standards in the Official Journal which do not fully meet the essential requirements of Directive 94/62/EC. To facilitate collection, reuse and recovery including recycling, an identification system for packaging has been drawn up (Commission Decision 97/129/EC). Its use is voluntary.