Choice calls for simple labelling of food

NINE in 10 Australians are unsure where their food comes from, a survey has found.

The survey was conducted by consumer advocacy group Choice, which was calling for reforms to simplify country-of-origin labelling in Australia.

Choice is calling for labelling to be simplified to three claims:

  • Product of Australia - a claim about where the ingredients are from and where they are processed;
  • Manufactured in Australia - a claim about where the food was manufactured;
  • Packaged in Australia - a basic claim to accommodate products which by law have to carry an origin declaration.

Respondents to the Choice poll placed the most importance on primary produce such as meat and vegetables, followed by foods like dairy and bread.

Origin was least important when it came to highly processed foods like soft drink and confectionery.

Under Choice's proposal, the wording "from local and imported ingredients" would not be permitted.