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Milk sounding

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Milk sounding, the deceitful reference to fresh milk must be halted

Meat sounding and Cheese sounding have been under discussion in the past months, thanks to the questions submitted from the MEPs Paolo De Castro and Giovanni La Via to Commissioner Andriukaitis, and a sentence from the EU Court of Justice. It is now time to deal with another deception to consumers, milk sounding.

Milk

Incomparable in its genuine nature, that’s milk. A name which is also evoked in astronomy – through the Milky Way- and in our vocabulary (‘milky), referred to something that is universally known as such, in its authentic significance.

Milk is crucial in the first stage of a person’s life, as for all mammals. It maintains a key role in the rest of our existence. For reasons that are partly explained by science, (1) partly by a millennium tradition in consumption.

Regulation (EC) n1234/07 Ann.XIII, point II

Designation of the food, dairy products

Regulation (EC) No 1234/2007 establishes the principle that the descriptions of milk products may not be used for products other than those in described point II of Annex XII thereto. (see above paragraph, blu box). (2)

The EU Commission , by Decision EU 2010/791, has gathered the name of food that- by way of derogation to the above -mmay include the word milk or of dairy products, despite having different characteristics. With reason to a ‘traditional use and with the condition that the consumer is clear on the ‘exact nature’ of such product.

Almond milk’, ‘coconut milk’, ‘cocoa butter’, ‘haricots beurre’ are the only names in non-dairy products allowed by the European Commission, within the designation of foodstuffs. (3)

Milk sounding

The rule system is so clear that nobody dares to evoke milk to describe a cereal-based beverage (e.g. rice, oat) or legume based (i.e. soy).

Deceptions to the consumer are more subtle and pass through declararions of equivalence to fresh milk. Referred to products that contain, at least in part, its raw material in an altered form because of invasive industrial processes. Thus, incomparable.

Milk sounding is what we experience with the deceitful advertising of products like Galatine candies and Inalpi’s ‘Fettine di Latte’ (‘Milk Slices’), that we have already reported to the IAP (Self-Regulation Advertising Council) and to the Italian Antitrust authority. It can also be found in Sangemini advertisement, whereas an unlawful comparative claim is Made between mineral water and milk. (4)

Dario Dongo

Notes

(1) See ‘Cow’s milk, role as a food and its effects on human health’, Cra-Nut June 2017 on  http://nut.entecra.it/files/download/NEWS/il_latte_vaccino_10072017.pdf

(2) See Decision EU 2010/79, Recital 2

(3) See Decision EU 2010/79, Annex 1

(4) Under Reg. EC 1924/06, art. 9, nutritional comparisons can only be made between foods of the same category. See also  http://www.foodagriculturerequirements.com/category/notizie/domande-e-risposte/mortadella-di-pollo-‘-60-grassi’-risponde-l’avvocato-dario-dongo

About the author

Dario Dongo

Dario Dongo

Dario Dongo, avvocato e giornalista, PhD in diritto alimentare internazionale, fondatore di WIISE (FARE - GIFT – Food Times) e cofondatore del Fatto Alimentare.