Health and nutrition claims for foods in Australia and New Zealand – and how these differ from those in the EU/UK

11 November 2022 | Ka Yin Law, Regulatory Affairs Advisor

In Australia and New Zealand, nutrition content claims and health claims for foods are regulated by Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code – Standard 1.2.7 – Nutrition, health and related claims . Whilst such claims are voluntary, they must comply with the requirements laid down in Standard 1.2.7. Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code Schedule 4 (Nutrition, health and related claims) , Schedule 5 (Nutrient profiling scoring method) and Schedule 6 (Required elements of a systematic review) set out detailed information relating to the Standard.

Nutrition content claims in Australia and New Zealand

Nutrition content claims refer to the content of certain nutrients or substances in food. To use a nutrition content claim, the food must meet the criteria for the claim, as set out in Schedule 4 .

For example, a food with the claim ‘good source of dietary fibre’, must contain at least 4g of dietary fibre in a serving. For a nutrition content claim of ‘increased dietary fibre’, which is considered a comparative claim in Australia, the food must contain at least 2 g of dietary fibre per serving and at least 25% more dietary fibre than the same amount of the comparative reference food. A reference food is a food of the same type as the food for which the claim is made, without further processing.

Health claims in Australia and New Zealand

There are two types of health claims – ‘general’ and ‘high’ level. General level claims refer to effects on general health, whereas high level claims relate to specific diseases / conditions. Pre-approved high level health claims for food-health relationships are listed in Schedule 4 .

Health claims can only be made if they meet the Nutrient Profiling Scoring Criterion (NPSC) in Schedule 5 . All health claims must be supported by scientific evidence to the same degree of certainty, whether they are pre-approved by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) or self-substantiated by food businesses by following the process for systematic review in Schedule 6 of the code.

Comparison to the EU/UK market

In the EU/UK, making nutrition and health claim is also voluntary and any food about which a claim is made must comply with the conditions set out for that claim, as laid down in regulation (EU) No 1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods (retained EU legislation in UK).

Authorised claims in both regions use a scientific and evidence-based substantiation, however there are differences in the outputs as the populations they are intended for are different.

‘Source of vitamin/mineral’ claims for example are substantially different between Australian and EU/UK markets. In the EU/UK, at least 15% of the nutrient reference value (NRV) for the vitamin or mineral is required per 100g or 100ml. Whereas for Australia, at least 10% RDI (Recommended Daily Intake) or ESADDI (Estimated Safe and Adequate Daily Dietary Intake) of a single serving is the minimum requirement, along with the additional conditions for that particular vitamin or mineral.

Campden BRI can help you ensure that your products are compliant with the legislative requirements of your target market. Our experienced team of regulatory experts can advise on the legislation surrounding nutrition labelling, advise on the use of nutrition and health claims, and support the preparation of health claim dossiers.

How can we help you?

If you’d like to find out more about nutrition and health claims in Australia and New Zealand, contact our support team to find out how we can help.

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