spiritsNEWS July 2023

Europe's Spirits Producers Successfully Achieve Energy On-Pack Target, Marking Milestone in Multiannual Labelling Commitment

Europe's spirits producers have achieved a significant milestone by successfully delivering on their commitment to provide energy information on labels for a constantly growing share of spirits sold in the EU. According to the Progress Report we published this month, around 66% of total volumes of spirits put on the EU market are now released in SKUs/bottles featuring energy-information on-pack. This share is expected to grow further over time. The sector has also made rapid progress in developing and rolling digital consumer information solutions.

These accomplishments are part of a multiannual voluntary agreement, known as the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Consumer Information, which was facilitated by the European Commission in 2019. The MoU offers clear guidance to producers on how to make nutrition information and ingredient listings available to consumers for spirit drinks (which are not mandatory under current EU regulation).

Despite the difficult market environment and tremendous challenges over the last years, we are proud to report that the sector has delivered on its labelling commitments outlined in the MoU.

Alongside this achievement, pioneering progress has been made in providing digital consumer information on ingredients and nutritional information. Working in close cooperation with the wine sector, spirits producers have managed to create bespoke e-label solutions that enable consumers across Europe to access product-specific information easily in their own language through QR code technology. As a result, the number of QR codes printed on back labels is substantially increasing.

spiritsEUROPE strongly believes in the benefits of e-labels from reducing packaging waste, providing detailed and tailored information to consumers, lowering production costs, and fostering innovation. The U-label Platform – developed together with colleagues from the wine sector – has proven to be an easy-to-use solution, allowing consistent and best practice information sharing with our customers across the EU. We expect rapid progress in this area, and we urge the European Commission to take a coordinated approach to digital labelling throughout the EU and include clear rules on digital labelling in the upcoming revision of the Regulation on Food Information to Consumers.

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