Catering establishments must display the country of origin of beef, pork, lamb, goat and poultry in writing from 1 May 2019 onwards. The country of origin can be indicated in the menu or a stand, for example.
According to a regulation issued by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, this obligation applies to catering establishments, such as restaurants and kiosks, that serve fresh, chilled or frozen meat. The country of origin of minced meat must also be displayed.
The country of origin of meat refers to the country in which the rearing took place. The country of origin of meat used in a meal must be indicated as follows: “Country of origin: (the name of the EU Member State or another country)”. If the country of origin of meat is not known precisely, expressions “EU” or “non-EU country” can be used. The country of origin can also be indicated with the Hyvää Suomesta label, which indicates the meat to be of Finnish origin.
The origin of game, horse meat and meat products does not need to be indicated
The obligation to indicate the origin of meat does not apply to horse, reindeer and game meat, such as elk meat. The origin of raw meat preparations and meat products does not need to be indicated, either.
For example, if a restaurant purchases ready-made and cooked beef steaks or marinated chicken fillets that are prepared as food, the country of origin of the meat does not need to be indicated to the consumer. However, if fresh chicken fillets are marinated and cooked in the restaurant, the country of origin of the meat must be indicated.
It is recommended to indicate the country of origin of meat voluntarily whenever it is possible.
Information on the country of origin of meat helps make a decision on buying it
Information about the country of origin of meat must be indicated to the consumer in writing before they make a decision as to whether buy the meat or not in order to enable them to make an informed decision. The information does not need to be communicated to each customer separately, but it must be made available before the decision is made.
The same information must be made available to consumers in online stores as in catering establishments.
The provisions on indicating the country of origin of meat are defined in the new, national regulation issued by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (154/2019), which has come into effect on 1 May 2019. The regulation is effective for two years until 30 April 2021.
Read more about indicating the country of origin of meat (in Finnish)
For more information, please contact:
Tuulikki Lehto, Senior Inspector, tel. +358 50 558 2696, firstname.lastname@example.org