Keto and low carb words are being criminalised in the UK due to new legilsation that will bring financial ruin to lots of businesses.
I hope this message finds you well. I am writing to bring to your attention an alarming situation that demands our collective support and action. Recently, the UK government implemented a ruling under the Nutrition and Health Claims Regulation (EC) 1924/2006, criminalising the use of the term "low carb," including keto. This decision, in place for the past two years, not only jeopardises numerous businesses but also poses a significant threat to public health, and yet the government is treating small businesses like they did with the post masters scandal.
The legislation, detailed in the provided link [https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nutrition-legislation-information-sources/nutrition-legislation-information-sheet--2#nutrition-law],
restricts the use of certain nutrition claims, such as "low carbohydrate" or "cholesterol-free." While terms like 'rich in protein' can be used if understood by consumers, the same leniency is not extended to 'low carbohydrate.' This unjust ruling stifles businesses from accurately communicating the benefits of low-carb and keto diets, hindering consumer choice and threatening economic stability.
Moreover, the European Union's stringent food labelling legislation further complicates the situation. Despite the increasing approval of the Keto diet by European consumers, the authorities have not embraced low-carb nutritional paradigms. The relevant regulations strictly regulate health and nutrition claims on food products sold within EU countries, potentially criminalising businesses for promoting products aligned with low-carb diets. You can find more information on this matter here [https://paleofoundation.com/keto-claims-in-the-european-union-rules-and-regulations-on-products/].
In response to this overreach, I have drafted a petition titled "Stop the Silencing of Low Carb: Demand Fair Regulations for a Healthier Future." This petition calls on the UK government to reconsider and overturn the unjust ruling that criminalises the use of "low carb" and keto terminology. By regulating the definition per gram, we aim to strike a balance between consumer protection and business freedom, fostering a healthier and more prosperous future for all.
I am currently awaiting feedback from Seriously Low Carb and others, and the petition is yet to go live. Additionally, I am reaching out to my MP to escalate this matter to the Secretary of State for Health. With a background as a clinical consultant for the NHS, I am no stranger to fighting for user rights and have successfully brought about changes in mental health services.
This will now make it a criminal offence for any business to trade with any product that has the words keto or low carb.
I urge you to stand with us against this government overreach. By signing the petition once it is live, we can collectively demand fair regulations and the reversal of this unjust ruling. Our voices, combined with those from across various trades, will send a powerful message to protect our businesses and uphold our right to inform consumers about healthier dietary options.
I am also reaching out to ask for your support in backing this petition once it is live and assisting in raising public awareness across social media platforms. Your influence and reach can make a significant difference in our collective efforts to challenge this unjust ruling.
I had clarification from a law firm who said
In response to your questions: Under Q.76 in the Government Guidance it clearly states that: "Low carb claims are not in the Annex of permitted nutrition claims and therefore can no longer be used." With regards to claiming that your product is Keto diet friendly, it appears this is also not permitted by the Health Claims Regulations.
the amendment that was dated 06 02 2024
Proposal 1: reforming the enforcement of the Nutrition and Health Claims Regulations 1924/2006 in England by introducing an improvement notice regime
It is a criminal offence to use an unauthorised nutrition or health claim - that is, one that is not included in the legislation.
In the UK, compliance with food standards is enforced by local authorities, which will usually be the Trading Standards or environmental health department of the local authority or port health authority.
Enforcement authorities carry out inspections of products to check that they meet all relevant labelling and marketing standards set out in legislation. Members of the public can contact an enforcement authority to report if they believe that the way a product is labelled or marketed does not meet regulatory standards. In most cases, the enforcement authority that is local to the product manufacturer’s head office or importer will follow up individual cases.
Currently in England, the regulations[footnote 1] enable the requirements of retained Regulation 1924/2006 to be enforced only by means of a criminal prosecution (fine or imprisonment).
Thank you for your time and consideration. Together, let us champion a healthier and more informed society.