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European Consumers Want Country Of Origin Labels

Survey Shows Overwhelming Support For Food Labels

European consumers want food labels that show where products are from. Country of origin labeling has been a topic of debate among European Union state members, and the system may soon get an overhaul based on responses to a recent survey.

BEUC, a European consumer organization, found 70 percent of responding consumers in four EU countries believe labels denoting countries of origin are important on food packaging. The results showed 77 percent of consumers in Austria, 71 percent in France, 66 percent in Poland and 61 percent in Sweden wanted better country of origin labeling standards.

Current EU Labels Spotty
The survey results come at a time when country of origin labels are getting increased attention across the entire EU spectrum. Currently, only certain foods including beef, olive oil, fruit, vegetables and eggs must carry origin labels, although that mandate will be extended to cover lamb, goat, poultry and pork starting December 2014.

It seems that while EU consumers wanted more country of origin labels, they had some trust in their EU brethren: Just 10 percent said labels differentiating EU and non-EU produced foods were important.