Regulation and legislation

Food Regulations

The production, processing, distribution, retail, packaging and labelling of food stuffs are governed by a mass of laws, regulations, codes of practice and guidance.

More in this section

  • General food law

    Whether you work in a food business or you are a consumer interested in food law, there are general requirements, which are listed on this page.

  • The Food Standards Act 1999

    The Act was introduced in the House of Commons on 10 June 1999 and received Royal Assent on 11 November 1999.

  • Food Alerts, product withdrawals and recalls

    The FSA issues information about product withdrawals and recalls to let consumers and local authorities know about problems associated with food.

  • Regulatory approach

    The Food Standards Agency has a statutory objective to protect public health and consumers' other interests in relation to food and drink. However, we are aware that excessive or unclear regulations can place a burden on business, the public sector and civil society groups (such voluntary groups, charities and not for profit organisations) and so hinder effective delivery of the intended benefits.

  • European legislation

    Much of the detailed legislation on food standards originates in the European Union. This section includes details on how food hygiene legislation was consolidated and simplified as well as details of other European legislation.

  • Codex

    Codex Alimentarius is a series of international standards for food and agricultural products. They help ensure fair trade and consumer protection internationally.

  • Food Information Regulation

    The EU Food Information for Consumers Regulation has been published in the Official Journal of the European Union. This means that the transition process has begun to replace the current food labelling regulations.

  • Whistleblowing

    FSA policy on handling disclosures made under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998.