Regulation and legislation

regulation magnifying glass
The production, processing, distribution, retail, packaging and labelling of food stuffs are governed by a mass of laws, regulations, codes of practice and guidance.

More in this section

Regulating Our Future

‘Regulating Our Future’ (ROF) and preparing for EU Exit are our two overriding priorities.

European legislation

Much of the detailed legislation on food standards originates in the European Union. This section includes details on how food hygiene legislation was consolidated and simplified as well as details of other European legislation.

Food Information Regulation

The EU Food Information for Consumers Regulation was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on the 25 October 2011.


FSA policy on handling disclosures made under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998.

General food law

Whether you work in a food business or you are a consumer interested in food law, there are general requirements, which are listed on this page.

Regulatory approach

The Food Standards Agency has a statutory objective to protect public health and consumers' other interests in relation to food. Excessive or unclear regulations, however, place an unnecessary burden on business, and other groups, and so hinder effective delivery of the intended benefits.


Codex Alimentarius is a series of international standards for food and agricultural products. They help ensure fair trade and consumer protection internationally.

The Food Standards Act 1999

The Act was introduced in the House of Commons on 10 June 1999 and received Royal Assent on 11 November 1999.