Farrer Food businesses have just under 5 months (148 days) to implement new country of origin labelling requirements by 1st July 2018.

Australian consumers have made it known they want clearer and more meaningful country of origin labelling so they can make more informed choices about the food they buy.

The Australian Government has responded by implementing new rules for food businesses to show whether their product was made, grown, produced or packed in Australia or another country.

The new Country of Origin labels for food were introduced on 1 July 2016 as a result of a new Information Standard and subsequent amendments to the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. The end of a two-year transition period is fast approaching

Under the new requirements, most Australian foods sold at a retail outlet will need to carry a label with a clearly defined box containing a…

• Kangaroo in a triangle logo to indicate that food was grown, produced or made in Australia

• Bar chart to indicate the proportion of Australian ingredients in the food &

• Statement summarising the visual information.

Minister for Jobs and Innovation Michaelia Cash says the reforms will give consumers the information they’ve been asking for, while also minimising costs to businesses by providing flexibility on how the labels can be applied to packaging.

“With more and more products carrying the new labels appearing on shelves, shoppers are getting better information about the products they buy.

“I applaud the many businesses already embracing the labelling reforms and urge those that haven’t changed over to do so as soon as possible,” Minister Cash said.

Help is available from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s website www.accc.gov.au/cool for businesses looking to understand the new requirements and what they mean for their products well ahead of the 1 July 2018 deadline.