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Brussels to ban soya milk

July 1st, 1995

Brussels is out to ban soya milk, claiming it is not sufficiently clearly labelled to distinguish it from cow’s milk (Constituent’s enquiry to Robert Sturdy MEP)

This is not true, there is no ban on soya milk products. A Council Regulation (1898/87,OJ L182 of 3.7.87) promoting the consumption of milk whilst protecting the name of milk against competing non-dairy products was agreed in 1987. In other words the problem is one of terminology, as is often the case where consumer protection is concerned, but no the product itself.

The Regulation recognised that a number of names already existed which obviously had no dairy connection (such as cream crackers), and it therefore listed a number of names which could continue to be used as before. The UK Government proposed the inclusion of soya milk on the list but it was not included, being opposed by all the other member States.

It is now up to manufacturers themselves to decide upon an alternative name, such as soya drink, which does not infringe the UK Dairy Designations Regulation, which implements the Food Labelling Regulation.

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