News on the labeling of food products in Ukraine

We would like to inform you on the recent news concerning the food products in Ukraine.

The Language Law. On July 16, the Law of Ukraine “On Ensuring the Functioning of the Ukrainian Language as State Language” came into force. The law stipulates that the only state (official) language in Ukraine is Ukrainian language, however it regulates only public relations and does not affect the private life.

The law covers the information for customers (product labeling, manuals), advertising and promotional materials, websites, public events (seminars, conferences) and more other things. For significant part of its provisions, transitional periods of 6 months are provided.

Information for customers. The Law of Ukraine “On Information for Customers Concerning Food Products” became effective on August 6, 2019. The law establishes the legal and organizational frameworks for providing customers with the information on food products, the list of mandatory information, the responsibility of market operators, etc.

The most significant changes to the labeling text include but not limited to the following:

  1. mandatory highlighting of substances or products causing allergy or intolerance;
  2. indication of time characteristics in the form of “Best before…” or “Best before end …”;
  3. the requirement to indicate the country of origin of the food product or ingredient (where applicable);
  4. harmonization of the form of providing information on nutritional value with European requirements;
  5. indication of the market operator responsible for the information on the food product;
  6. there were introduced new terms, i.e. “official name”, “common name”, “descriptive name”, “minimum shelf life” etc.;
  7. requirements for remote sales.

As these changes significantly affect the labeling text of food products, a three-year transitional period (up to August 6, 2022) was established during which the manufacturing and/or entity putting into circulation of the products shell meet the requirements of the previous legislation. Food products with labeling compliant to previous requirements may remain in circulation until the terminal consumption date or until the end of shelf life.

SI units. In 2015, in order to meet the requirements of the Association Agreement with the EU, Ukraine adopted the Regulations on Application of Units (Order No. 914 of the Ministry of Economic Development dated August 4, 2015). According to the Regulations, all manufacturers of consumer products are required to provide their product measuring in units according to the SI International System of Units (kilograms, centimeters, liters, etc.). Such products include:

  • food products (including dietary supplements);
  • medicine products;
  • medical devices;
  • cosmetics;
  • disinfectants etc.

At the end of 2018, changes were made to Order No. 914, which delayed the transitional period until January 1, 2021. Therefore, please note that the labeling text of food products put into circulation from January 1, 2021, must comply with the SI international units.

Mentioned above issues mainly relate to product labeling information. If you still have any questions – please contact us by e-mail, telephone +38 044 361-48-28 or visit our office.

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