Food Labelling

​​Codex Committee on Food Labelling (Host – Canada)

The CCFL drafts provisions on labelling of foods and endorses draft provisions on labelling. It also studies labelling issues assigned to it by the Codex Alimentarius Commission and it studies issues related to food advertising including claims and misleading descriptions.

Existing Codex Standards

Standards relating to food labelling* that have been endorsed and adopted into the international food code include standards on:

  • Use of the Term Halal
  • General Standard for the Labelling of Food Additives when sold as such
  • Labelling of and Claims for Pre-packaged Foods for Special Dietary Use
  • Labelling of and Claims for Foods for Special Medical Purposes
  • Production, Processing, Labelling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods
  • Packing Media (Composition and Labelling)
  • Guidelines for the Use of Nutrition and Health Claims

* This is an indicative list only. For a full list of standards approved by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, please consult its Official List of Standards.

Last Meeting

The 43rd Session of the Codex Committee on Food Labelling (CCFL) was held in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada from 9 - 13 May 2016

Matters for approval by the 39th Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission

The Committee forwarded the following project document for approval as new work:

  • Guidance for the labelling on non-retail containers (para.54 and Appendix III).

Matters of Interest for the 39th Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission

The Committee:

  • Proposed that CAC39 identify an appropriate forum to continue work on the proposed draft revision of the Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labelling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods: Organic Agriculture or to discontinue this work (para. 27);
  • Discontinued discussion on issues related to internet sales of food (para. 55);
  • Agreed to not proceed with the revision of the General Guidelines for the Use of the Term “Halal” (CAC/GL 24-1997), but to consider a discussion paper on issues surrounding consumer preference claims (paras 62 – 63)
  • Agreed to prepare discussion papers on front-of-pack labelling (para. 70) and future work of CCFL (para. 71).

Matters for other subsidiary bodies

Executive Committee of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CCEXEC)

  • The Committee agreed there was no need to develop a particular work management approach, but could consider such an need in the future (para. 6).


  • The Committee endorsed the labelling provisions in the standards submitted by CCASIA, CCSCH, CCFFV and CCFA (paras 11 - 22).

Committee on Food Import and Export Inspection and Certification Systems (CCFICS)

  • The Committee agreed not to consider the matter of food integrity/food authenticity, but to wait for discussion and decision from CCFICS (para. 7).

Committee on Food Hygiene (CCFH)

  • The Committee agreed to request advice from CCFH on the appropriateness of the food safety criterion 1 to exempt foods from date marking (para. 42, Appendix II).

Next Meeting

The 44th Session of the Committee will be held in approximately 18 months subject to final arrangements between the Codex and Host Secretariats.

Last reviewed: 1 October 2020
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