Amendments to food legislation came into effect on 1 May. They were developed by the initiative of Valentina Matvienko, the speaker of the Federation Council and Vyacheslav Volodin, the speaker of the State Duma. The legislators proposed that the manufacturers producing quality food should be incentivized and that the counterfeit or substandard products should be withdrawn from commerce and destroyed. However, these are not the only modifications in the law.
Above all, even the enacting clause of the Law ‘On Product Quality and Safety’ has changed. Now the law also regulates the catering sphere, where it is oriented to health protection, including children. The document has been supplemented with new chapters devoted to catering for children.
Food for the younger generation has to comply with their age and physiology. Key amendment: hot meals at schools, colleges and children’s camps are mandatory. At the same time, the regulation on free hot meals for primary students will come into effect since 1 September.
Also, special requirements have been imposed on catering for seniors, disabled people, patients of the hospitals and employees in the plants with harmful and hazardous working conditions.
For the first time, the law has defined healthy nutrition – a daily ration which considers safety requirements and ‘creates conditions for physical and intellectual development, human life and future generations’. It has to comply with the principles of healthy nutrition which are also outlined in the law. In particular, for the ration to be healthy, as per the Law ‘On Product Quality and Safety’, it has to meet the following requirements:
caloric value of the dishes corresponding to energy consumption
ingredients rich in vitamins, dietary fibres and bioactive substances
low content of saturated fats, simple sugars and table salt
healthy menu with chemical composition satisfying human needs for proteins, fats,
aminoacids, carbohydrates, vitamins and other nutrients
If a company wants to declare their products as healthy, there is another principle to be observed; consumer health has to prevail over economic interests. The grounds for prohibiting production, sale and use of food products have been revised. In particular, the prohibition will cover products identified as counterfeit, products with untraceable turnover or those recognized as hazardous or low-quality in sensorical aspects. Such products will be withdrawn from commerce and destroyed.
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