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Food Law Blog

Lizzie Walters
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The cold war over the usage rights of the name Iceland highlights the legal problems that can arise without effective brand name protection. When Malcolm Walker opened his first Iceland store in Oswestry, Shropshire in 1969, no one knew that he...
Peter Seary
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Since the Brexit vote, much has been made of the benefits for British exporters of a weaker pound, however, relatively little has been heard of the prospect of higher food prices - until the news of the recent  impasse between Tesco and Unilever. ...
Posted in:PeterSeary, Food
Tim Russ
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Calls for a mandatory ‘method of production’ label on meat and dairy products could be fraught with challenges and the recent proposals from the British Veterinary Association (BVA) could be impossible to police. The BVA has suggested that...
Posted in:TimRuss, Food
Lizzie Walters
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What protection is available? Protected Geographical Indication ( PGI ) This is for products that are closely linked to a certain geographical area. If protected, at least one of the stages of production, processing or preparation will have to take...
Posted in:LizzieWalters, Food
Peter Cusick
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The colourful and entertaining judgment of Mr Justice Flaux in Alan Ramsey Sales & Marketing Limited -v- Typhoo Tea Limited published on 8 th March 2016 is essential reading for anyone advising on the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations...
Posted in:PeterCusick, Food
Peter Cusick
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The recent Judgment of Lord Tyre in the case of Angus Growers Ltd v Scottish Ministers  Court of Session (Outer House) will make very unpleasant reading for the Rural Payments Agency in many ways. It is a case of great interest to those advising...
Posted in:PeterCusick, Food
Lizzie Walters
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As a food business you would be wise to invest in protecting your key designs – particularly after the courts rejected a plea by Kit Kat to trademark their legendary four-fingered shape. The well reported case involved Cadbury, who challenged an...
Posted in:LizzieWalters, Food
Mike Matthews
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So you have finally secured the deal with the large retailer to stock your food products.  It will be plain sailing from now – massive orders, secure cash flow and national exposure for your brand.  Right?  Not necessarily, and in fact...
Posted in:MikeMatthews, Food
Rebecca Quick
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This is an update following the commencement of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the Act), in particular s.54 which places an obligation upon those businesses with a total turnover in excess of £36 million which carry on business in the UK, or a part of...
Posted in:RebeccaQuick, Food
Tim Russ
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An FSA decision could lead to unnecessary and excessive controls on meat suppliers. During a meeting on 9 September the FSA Board considered a range of controls for businesses when they are serving ‘rare’ mince following an increase in demand...
Posted in:TimRuss, Food
Rebecca Quick
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As part of the Modern Slavery Act, which came into force on 31 July, all companies and partnerships operating in the UK with an annual turnover of £36m or more will have to provide a yearly statement detailing their efforts to stop supply chain...
Posted in:RebeccaQuick, Food
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The UK food industry is facing yet another supply chain scandal, and while not on the same scale as ‘horsegate’, the Bart’s Ingredients and Genius product withdrawals and now the ‘oregano’ food fraud (see The Grocer article ...
Posted in:, Food
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Leading free-from manufacturer Genius recently recalled over 20 of its lines from supermarkets across the country and while the reputational damage suffered by Genius will no doubt be substantial, there is a question as to whether it is warranted.  ...
Posted in:, Food
Lizzie Walters
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What is a brand? A strong brand helps distinguish a business’ products from its competitors’. It adds value to the business by enhancing consumer awareness and improving customer loyalty. A brand can be made up of many elements, including: A...
Posted in:LizzieWalters, Food
Phil Cookson
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This information has kindly been provided by the British Frozen Food Federation http://bfff.co.uk/ ALL food manufacturers will be inspected by HSE between April '15 and April '16. Their inspections will start with food producers within the...
Posted in:PhilCookson, Food
Mike Matthews
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The aim of a Producer Organisation (PO) is to support its members and help them to secure a better position in the market, reduce costs, increase the viability of all members’ businesses and achieve a more sustainable position in the supply chain. ...
Posted in:MikeMatthews, Food
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The Groceries Supply Code of Practice (GSCOP) is legislation designed to regulate the relationship between supermarkets and their suppliers. Since its introduction in 2009 the Code has had, in reality, limited impact. However, the introduction of a...
Posted in:, Food
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Peter Bennett, head of the Food and Drink team at specialist law firm Roythornes, has listed his top five legal themes for 2015.   Free From The growth in free-from foods has been explosive and is likely to continue for years to come. Over the past...
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Importing food products presents diverse and exciting new business opportunities that open up entirely new markets or make existing ones more competitive. In order to import successfully, food businesses need to develop a solid understanding of the relevant...
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As a food  business grows, there comes a time when you may need to start to think about taking on more staff. Whether it’s part-time or full time there are a number of key steps you must take as you take on someone for the first time. John...
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Scotland’s decision to continue on as part of the UK will be widely welcomed by the nation’s food and drink industry. Questions over EU membership, the continuance of trade agreements and currency meant that key players in the country’s...
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The pros and cons for an increasingly centralised food market have been and will continue to be well discussed and analysed. Concerns over job cuts, reduced competition and a lack of innovation are mulled over and debated with vigour in a retail environment...
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The recent halal food ‘scandals’ and reports of the presence of blood serums and offal in meat product tests serve to highlight several issues for the food and drink industry. The ‘method of slaughter’ hype currently doing the rounds...
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We’ve all heard the scare stories about social media. How personal posts on corporate accounts have caused embarrassment to businesses, how staff have complained about customers on their private accounts and how simple ‘off the cuff’...
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The impact of legislation on food ingredients and changing eating habits. The establishment of a new campaign group which is intent on convincing food manufacturers to reduce the volume of sugar in every day food is the latest skirmish in the on-going...
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Food waste is high on the list of priorities for most retailers across the UK as they search for cost savings which meet CSR policies. With landfill bans all but ruled out by UK government the focus will shift to helping producers develop and manufacture...
Posted in:, Food
Leigh White
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Today’s tight economic situation means cash and debt management can make a real impact on the financial stability of a food business. It only takes a few bad accounts on your books to make a real impact.  How many times have we heard ‘cash...
Posted in:LeighWhite, Food
Phil Cookson
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With the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) taking action to reduce the dangers of diesel engine exhaust emissions (DEEE), food and logistics companies need to ensure they are protecting staff from exposure. Phil Cookson of Roythornes solicitors, one of the...
Posted in:PhilCookson, Food
Martin Jinks
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Much of the detailed legislation governing the standards of food in the UK originates in the European Union and it is here that food producers must start when seeking to introduce a new product into the UK market. There are a seemingly endless number of...
Posted in:MartinJinks, Food
Lizzie Walters
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Can you copyright a recipe? If your business has spent time and money in developing a recipe or new product, you should be thinking about protecting it from competitors. But can you copyright a recipe and is this the best way to protect your work? In the...
Posted in:LizzieWalters, Food