Food labelling - date and lot marking of packaged food

Most packaged foods (ones prepackaged in advance of their sale) are required to be date marked with an indication of the minimum durability of the food. There are, however, a small number of packaged foods that are exempt from this requirement. It is the responsibility of the packer of the food to decide upon the type of date marking to apply to the foods packaged by them. No one else in the supply chain is permitted to alter or remove the date marking on a packaged food without the permission, in writing, of the packer (or in the case of imported food - the importer). There are three different types of date marking: use by, best before, and best before end. Most pre-packed foods must carry a batch and/or lot number so a product can be traced if necessary.

In the guide
Types of date marking
Conditions of sale
Exemptions from date marking
Lot marking


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