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France. Vegetable proteins: from now on, don't call them meat!

Paris notifies EU of draft decree that will ban appellations like 'steak' or 'fillet'

France has notified the European Union of a draft national decree to ban the use of certain names used for meat, for products based on vegetable proteins, such as "fillet", "sirloin", "rib steak", "sirloin". , "steak", "scallop", "barbecue", "chops", "ham", etc. The new transalpine legislation has a similar objective to that pursued by the Italian bill on the production and marketing of synthetic food and feed in Italy (read EFA News ). The latter, already approved by the Senate, also prohibits the use of names that refer to meat and its derivatives for processed products which instead contain exclusively vegetable proteins.

The draft French decree establishes the list of terms whose use is prohibited for the designation of food products containing vegetable proteins and the list of terms authorized for the designation of food products of animal origin which may contain vegetable proteins and the maximum percentage of vegetable protein which may be contained in foodstuffs for which these terms are used. The food products covered by the draft decree are those containing vegetable proteins or ingredients of non-animal origin containing proteins. Finally, the text provides for sanctions in the event of violation of its provisions.

In this draft decree, the government takes into account the observations of the Council of State, which had deemed the original text too vague. The new text, signed by Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne , Minister of Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire and Minister of Agriculture Marc Fesneau , includes a list of twenty-one terms "the use of which is prohibited for the designation of food products containing vegetable proteins". While the veto on the terms "paleron", "tendron", "hampe" or "flank steak" should not disturb the imitation meat industry, targeting the names "steak", "hampe" or "scaloppine" should be more incisive.

"The French government is attentive to issues relating to consumer information on food products - we read on the European Commission website -. In order to strengthen consumer protection against the use of inappropriate terms to designate food products, this draft decree, drawn up in close consultation with the sectors concerned, regulates the use of certain names for foods containing vegetable proteins".

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EFA News - European Food Agency