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Chocolatiers see red over labels

Petition launched over health minister Marisol Touraine's plan to colour-code food according to how healthy it is

18 August 2014

FRANCE’S chocolatiers are seeing red over government plans to colour-code food according to how healthy it is.

They have launched a petition and social media campaign in a bid to force health minister Marisol Touraine to abandon plans for a five-colour code to indicate a food’s sugar, fat, salt and calorie content.

Chocolate, which is rich in fatty acids and full of sugar, would fall into the red category. Under the scheme, foods with red labels “should be avoided”.

It has prompted bitter chocolate makers to launch a petition in a bid to force Ms Touraine to abandon the scheme.

France’s chocolate maker’s union, the Confédération des Chocolatiers, Confiseurs, Biscuitiers warned that the scheme would threaten the futures of the country’s 4,500 artisan chocolatiers, who employ about 15,000 people.

“This bill goes against the capacity of an individual’s discretion and the proven qualities of chocolate,” it wrote in its petition, which this morning had more than 3,400 signatures. “This type of labelling will not reduce obesity or diabetes because chocolate doesn’t make you fat.”

Photo: Andry Rakotomavo

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