The Ulster Farmers’ Union Poultry Committee has welcomed new EU rules for poultrymeat labelling which extend the current marketing standards to poultry preparations and products.

Under the rules agreed this week, poultry products like crowns, prepared joints and ready meals may no longer be labelled as “fresh” or “chilled” or sold in chill cabinets if they have previously been frozen.

The UFU believes the new marketing standards, which will apply from 1 May 2010, will give more confidence to consumers in their purchases by ensuring the information provided on poultrymeat labels is more accurate so they aren’t misled.

Speaking after the decision taken at the EU’s Agriculture Council meeting earlier this week, poultry committee chairman John McLenaghan said; “The UFU has consistently lobbied for accurate labelling of poultrymeat and argued that poultrymeat that has been frozen and subsequently thawed out should not be described as fresh.

“Although not yet agreed, we have also called for a compulsory label of origin of the meat to let consumers make a properly informed choice.”