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Fruit juices and similar products

Fruit juices and similar products

 

SUMMARY OF:

Directive 2001/112/EC relating to fruit juices and certain similar products intended for human consumption

WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE DIRECTIVE?

It sets out specific rules regarding the composition of fruit juices, their reserved names, their manufacturing characteristics and their labelling.

KEY POINTS.

Fruit juices

The products covered by this directive are:

  • fruit juice,
  • fruit juice from concentrate,
  • concentrated fruit juice,
  • dehydrated/powdered fruit juice,
  • water-extracted fruit juice, and
  • fruit nectar.

These products are defined on the basis of their composition and preparation processes so as to ensure that the terms are used correctly in trade, and not in a manner which may mislead consumers. The directive also defines particular (traditional) designations used in certain countries and languages.

Labelling

  • Fruit juices are labelled in accordance with the general rules laid down in Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the labelling of foodstuffs (see summary). However, additional, specific rules are adopted in this directive in order to improve consumer information. These require to make it clear in the product name:
    • if a product is a mixture of different fruits;
    • if a product has been obtained entirely or partly from a concentrate.
  • Since amending Directive 2012/12/EU was adopted, the addition of sugars is no longer authorised in fruit juices. For other products, added sugars should continue to be labelled in accordance with Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011. Since the addition of sugars was previously allowed, it was common that some food-business operators labelled the absence of added sugars in the fruit juices for commercial reasons by means of nutrition claim ‘with no added sugars’. The use of this claim was disallowed after the end of a transitional period of 18 months.
  • To enable the industry to properly inform consumers both during the transitional period and another 18 months after its end, food-business operators could use a statement on the labels informing consumers that, from a certain date, no fruit juices contain added sugars.
  • For products manufactured from 2 or more fruits, except where lemon and/or lime juice are used, the product name must be composed of a list of the fruits used, in descending order of the volume of the fruit juices or purées included, as indicated in the list of ingredients.
  • In the case of products manufactured from 3 or more fruits, the indication of the fruits used may be replaced by the words ‘several fruits’ or a similar wording, or by the number of fruits used.
  • In the case of concentrated fruit juice, if the product is not intended for delivery to the final consumer, the labelling must indicate the presence and quantity of added lemon juice, lime juice or acidifying agents on the packaging, on a label attached to the packaging, or on an accompanying document.
  • The directive lists the raw materials which may be used to manufacture juice and nectar, and also the additives which may be authorised, subject to Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the labelling for foodstuffs.
  • The minimum content of fruit juice and/or fruit purée in fruit nectar must conform to the levels indicated in the directive and must be stated in the product labelling.

FROM WHEN DOES THE DIRECTIVE APPLY?

It has applied since 12 January 2002 and had to become law in the EU countries by 11 July 2003.

BACKGROUND

For more information, see:

MAIN DOCUMENT

Council Directive 2001/112/EC of 20 December 2001 relating to fruit juices and certain similar products intended for human consumption (OJ L 10, 12.1.2002, pp. 58-66)

Successive amendments to Directive 2001/112/EC have been incorporated into the original text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

RELATED DOCUMENTS

Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1040/2014 of 25 July 2014 amending Council Directive 2001/112/EC relating to fruit juices and certain similar products intended for human consumption to adapt its Annex I to technical progress (OJ L 288, 2.10.2014, pp. 1-2)

last update 29.05.2020

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