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Queries over the tin can standardisation

March 18th, 1993

Myth: Brussels is responsible for bringing in laws on regulating the size of tin cans. Is this fair on the consumer?

Response: There has been legislation in this area, with a directive (*) fixing the range of permissable container capacities for preserves, and semi-preserves of vegetable products in tins and glass containers.
Nevertheless this directive is optional ie. Member States are given the option to authorise container capacities which are not covered by the Directive and may not refuse the placing on the market of products which satisfy the requirements of the Directive.
The capacities selected in the Directive result from European standardisation following initiatives by industry. These capacities are 370ml, 425ml, 446ml, 580ml and so on.

(*) – Directive 80/232/EEC, 15.1.1980, Annexe 2.

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