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SAFEGUARDS | Food NO. 054/15

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From December 2, 2016 labeling on pre-packed foods in Thailand must comply with Thai Ministry of Public Health Notification No.367 (2014), which came into force on December 3, 2014. The effective period for using old labels can be extended, but not beyond two years (December 2, 2016).

Food labels are important, to communicate product information to consumers. They should comply with all legislation on labeling, according to international standards, including that text on a label must be clear, easy to understand and helpful to consumers. Therefore, the Thai Ministry of Public Health [1] issued notification No. 367(2014) [2] regarding the labeling of pre-packed foods. It has content in addition to the previous notification:

  • Text on the label of pre-packed food shall be in the Thai language and shall specify the ingredients of the food, especially information about food allergies, and declarations of the functional class titles of food additives, together with specific names or the International Numbering System (INS for Food Additives)

  • Labels must display the words “should consume by” accompanied by the day, month and year when the shelf life of a product is not longer than 90 days, or display the day, month and year - when shelf life of a product is longer than 90 days

  • Text appearing on labels shall be prominent and readily legible. The size of letters and spacing of the label shall be proportionate

  • Words or text, pictures, pictorials, invented designs, marks, brands or trademarks, or registered trade marks in any language which appear on label shall not falsehood or deceptive to create gullibility or misleading of important characteristics of food.

  • Label must be presented for claims of substances or other compositions in food, such as the substances shall not be prohibited substances regarding the Notification of Ministry of Public Health

Additional specifications in the new regulation are related to the text of information relating to food allergies: it states eight types of allergens or hypersensitivity substances. They are:

  • Cereals containing gluten such as wheat, rye, barley, oat, spelt, or their hybridized strains and their products

  • Crustaceans such as crab, shrimp, mantis shrimp, lobster and their products

  • Eggs and egg products

  • Fish and fish products

  • Peanut, soybean and their products

  • Milk and dairy products including lactose

  • Tree nuts and their products such as almond, walnut, pecan

  • Sulphite at a concentration of 10 mg/kg or more

Food products that contain these allergens must announce their presence with the following text:

  • In the case of their use as ingredients in food “contains…….”

  • In the case of potential contamination during processing, the label must state “may contain……”

This Regulation came into force on December 3, 2014. Manufacturers or importers of food for which labels have been made prior to this date can extend their use for up to two years. However, the two-year transition period will come to an end on December 2, 2016.

What do the changes mean?

Later this year the use of old labels will no longer be permitted. Manufacturers and importers need to prepare and be ready to use new labels which comply with notification No.367 on December 2, 2016. For more information, or to discuss your testing, analysis and certification requirements contact a food safety expert, such as SGS.

SGS is committed to keeping you informed of regulation news and developments. Leveraging our global network of laboratories and food experts, SGS provides a comprehensive range of food safety and quality solutions including analytical tests, audits, certifications, inspections, and technical support. We continually invest in our testing, capability, and state-of-the art technology to help you reduce risk, and to improve food safety and quality. For more information, please visit our website: www.foodsafety.sgs.com.

For enquiries, please contact:

Naovarat Dachprasat
Food Technical Support Center

t: +66 2683 0541 ext 2168

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