Chartered Trading Standards Institute
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CTSI response to FSA consumer awareness campaign for vegan food

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) are issuing the below quote in response to the Food Standards Agency campaign highlighting the risk of food labelled as vegan to people with allergies.

CTSI Chief Executive, John Herriman, said:

“CTSI is pleased to see the launch of the Food Standards Agency consumer campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of vegan food for allergen sufferers as consumer education is a crucial cog in the consumer protection landscape - informed consumers mean safer consumers.

“However, CTSI’s recent policy report put a spotlight on the potential dangers for allergen sufferers and the need for a legal definition for Vegan and Plant-Based food as the ambiguity around these terms can have disastrous and sometimes tragic consequences for those with allergies to animal-derived products, like milk and eggs.

“Consumer education alone should be seen as a stop gap whilst we campaign for changes in the legal framework for selling food so that consumers can make informed choices, and food businesses have clarity about what the phrases means.

“The rise in demand for foods sold or promoted as ‘vegan’ or ‘plant-based’ has soared in recent years and with that has been a rise in complaints and incidents where consumers feel they have been misled by the use of such terms, for numerous reasons. There has also been an increase in those with animal-derived allergies choosing foods marked ‘vegan’ thinking they are safe for them to eat, only to suffer an allergic reaction. This shows a real need for a legal definition to give both consumers and businesses the clarity that is needed.”

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI)

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) is a national not for profit established in 1881 which supports the UK’s trading standards profession, and works to protect consumers and safeguard honest businesses. CTSI's members are engaged in delivering frontline trading standards services at local authorities and in businesses.


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