Ireland's ice cream laws face revamp in the battle against obesity
The food standards regulations which set compositional requirements for ice-cream, and specifically its minimum milk-fat, milk solids and sugar content are set to be changed.
The Minister of State for Health Promotion, Marcella Corcoran Kennedy, has proposed to revoke the current Food Standards (Ice-Cream) Regulations dating from 1952.
In a statement by the FSAI, the ice cream industry, in an effort to make food healthier and to meet some of the objectives set in the Department of Health’s Strategy, is seeking to reformulate high fat, salt, sugar foods and drinks.
In particular, the stipulation that ice-cream contain at least 10% by weight of sugar presents problems for any company wishing to reduce the sugar content of its ice-cream products, according to the FSAI.
It says the purpose of the proposed Regulations is to revoke these compositional standards as soon as possible.
Having consulted other relevant government departments and official agencies, it is considered that is no longer fit for purpose and has largely been superseded by EU legislation, she said.
Recent research found that Ireland has the third highest consumption of ice cream per capita in Europe and the product has a retail market value of approximately €75.8m, according to Bord Bia.