The European Union has postponed until the second quarter of 2023 the submission of the proposed regulation on front-of-pack food labels. The news has brought relief to the main Italian institutions and associations of growers and food industries. Starting with Coldiretti (the main association of Italian farmers), according to which the decision “saves, for now, 85 percent in value of Italian F&B production with the protected denomination of origin (PDO, PGI, etc.), which risked being unfairly penalized by the Nutriscore label. The postponement, moreover, confirms the misgivings about the traffic light label already underlined, several times, by Italy and other countries.” According to Coldiretti, the Nutriscore “is a misleading, discriminatory, and incomplete labeling system that, paradoxically, excludes the excellent food of the Mediterranean Diet.”
“We hope that time will bring counsel,” says Luigi Scordamaglia, Managing Director of Filiera Italia (an association of Italian food industries), speaking of “good news for Italian food, that risks being unfairly penalized by a labeling system such as Nutriscore. It is in fact misleading for consumers and has potentially very dangerous effects on health. Just think of what it means to let hyper-processed products, the result of synthetic processes, be considered better than healthy products such as extra virgin olive oil or Parmigiano Reggiano PDO. Italy has fought against this labeling system in every possible way, succeeding in building solid alliances with other states. Education for a healthy and balanced diet is done with correct information and not with prohibitions aimed at criminalizing individual nutritional elements. This would only open the doors wide to food homogenization, and to those few multinationals according to which the future of the agri-food sector lies in chemistry laboratories rather than in the soil,” Scordamaglia says.