The Nutri-Score system – which gives an idea of the nutritional value of food through a letter system – is beginning to take hold in Belgium. The system aims to help consumers make healthier food choices, and is already widely used in France and the UK. It was officially launched in Belgium on Tuesday by outgoing Minister of Social Affairs and Health Maggie De Block.
The Nutri-Score system consists of five coloured letters – A, B, C, D, E – ranked from best to worst. With these five letters, consumers can get an idea of the nutritional value of food with relative ease.
A year ago, Delhaize introduced Nutri-Score for some of its products. The Colruyt group has also applied this logo on some of these foods. Last August, the Carrefour brand announced that Nutri-Score would appear gradually on some food groups.
Detractors from the programme have voiced concerned about the consistency across a European level and worry that without a common approach to labelling that the system is likely to face problems, according to reports.
“It is difficult to require companies that use multilingual packaging in several countries to apply a different label system for each of these markets. So let our companies choose themselves if they can add additional information, in addition to the legally required information,” said Fevia, the Federation of the Belgian food industry, in a statement.
The Royal Decree organizing the legal basis for the emergence of the Nutri-Score system was published Monday in the Moniteur.