STORY: Honest Crust Act a step closer?

Following 12 years of lobbying by the Real Bread Campaign, Defra is set to review the Bread and Flour Regulations.

After more than a dozen years of calling for improved loaf labelling and marketing laws in the UK, and two and a half years since the government promised us such a review, the Real Bread Campaign has been invited to join the new Bread and Flour Technical Working Group (BFTWG).

In the invitation, Defra stated: “The BFTWG will be comprised of a small group of stakeholders that represent a cross section of the bread and flour supply chain that have broad issue coverage and representation.” It went on to say: “The purpose will be to look into and resolve issues relating to the Bread and Flour Regulations 1998. Firstly we hope it will help inform Defra’s review of the regulations but in the longer term we are hoping it can be convened as and when needed.”

A follow up message added: "Defra alongside Food Standards Agency Northern Ireland, Food Standards Agency Wales and Food Standards Scotland who are responsible for Food Compositional Standards policy in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales have agreed under the Food compositional standards and labelling provisional common framework to jointly conduct a review on the Bread and Flour Regulations 1998 and the Bread and Flour Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1998 and have formed and internal working group for this purpose."

The first BFTWG virtual meeting will be on 22 September 2021, though Defra has yet to detail the exact scope of the group. The Real Bread Campaign will be taking this opportunity to present, yet again, its calls for an Honest Crust Act to help create a more level playing field on which SME bakeries have a better chance to thrive, and to protect the rights of shoppers to be able to make better-informed choices.


Real Bread Campaign co-ordinator Chris Young said: “I’m pleased that our persistence is paying off. Thank you to Campaign supporters who enable us to keep going, and to Grahame Morris, other MPs and friends who help us to keep these important issues on the table."

Who's around the table?

Defra has advised that the organisations and companies they have been invited to be part of the group are:

Association Bakery Ingredient Manufacturers (ABIM)

British Retail Consortium (BRC)

Cereal Ingredient Manufacturers Association (CIMA)

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Department of Health and Social Care

Department of Health Northern Ireland

Federation of Bakers (FoB)

Food and Drink Federation (FDF)

Food Standards Agency Northern Ireland

Food Standards Agency Wales

Food Standards Scotland

National Farmers Union (NFU)

Prior Consulting (representing Mills Section of SPAB (The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings) and the Traditional Cornmillers Guild)

Real Bread Campaign

Scottish Government

Snack, Nut and Crisp Manufacturers Association (SNCMA)

Society for Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB)

Trading Standards

UK Flour Millers

The Grain and Feed Trade Association

Welsh Government



They have also invited the following companies:

AB Mauri UK & Ireland

Allied Technical Centre

Lesaffre UK & Ireland


Premier Foods


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