Introduction to EU Food Legislation

Information may not be available in English. You can find some basic information on main lectures page.


The main objective of these lectures (and discussions) is to elucidate European food law principles and objectives relevant to food and feed production and distribution. Basic requirements on the manufacturing, labelling, marketing and control of food quality and safety are explained with respect to both unified european market and specific national rules. Attention is paid to the protection of consumers against fraud and misleading information as well as to the assessment of nutrition and health claims. Scientifically based health risk management, “from farm to fork” approach to traceability of raw materials (including feed), and principles of “Good Hygienic/Manufacturing Practice” are presented to understand the most important european regulations and technical standards. Due to the rapid development of EU Food law, only the most important principles, definitions and requirements on food business operators, testing laboratories and food control bodies are explained in detail. The emphasis is put on practical examples, recent incidents and discussion illuminating subject in question.
At the end of this course, students shall be able to search all relevant information in EU legislation documents, technical standards, Codex Alimentarius documents and also to find specific requirements on given food product or testing laboratories and methods necessary for the assessment of conformity with regulations. Knowledge of the structure, legal status (force) and “up-to-dateness” of regulatory documents and various standards will be important in practice.


  1. Food Law in EU and member states: general principles, scope of regulation, product (food) safety and responsibilities, protection of consumers, food fraud and adulteration.
  2. Understanding of EU law documents, searching consolidated versions, technical standardization (EN and ISO norms), certification; Codex Alimentarius standards, manufacturer´s standards.
  3. Food safety: requirements of food law, EFSA role and scientific support, risk analysis, RASFF, risk/crisis management. Public health protection.
  4. Food Act requirements on food bussiness operators, searching legislative documents and guidelines, protection against unsafe or adulterated food; specifications of some commodities, novel food.
  5. Chemical contaminants in food and feedstuffs, residues of pesticides and veterinary drugs,
  6. Food additives and flavourings: justification and conditions for their usage, food fortification.
  7. Microbiological criteria, Food hygiene principles, HACCP, GHP/GMP, food safety management system.
  8. Critical control points in food production and gastronomy, guidelines for the application of the HACCP system (step-by-step case studies).
  9. Food labelling rules, information for consumers, calculation of nutrition values, nutrition and health claims, allergens.
  10. Food for special medical purposes, food intended for young childern, food supplements, food from organic farming; protection of geographical indication, designations of food origin, food authentication.
  11. Animal health and animal welfare rules, veterinary inspection, importing and exporting food.
  12. Principles of official controls of food quality and safety in EU countries; competent authorities, food inspection rules, corrective actions and penalties, means of communication.
  13. Measurement and conformity assessment, food sampling and testing (general rules), the role of the European reference laboratories; accreditation of testing laboratory, company´s own control.
  14. Food contact materials and migration, food packaging, waste management and environmental protection, REACH regulation.

Recommended sources

1) Monographs (Czech)

2) Documents (English version will be provided on request)

3) Technical standards

  • ISO EN 9001:2010 Quality management systems
  • EN ISO 22000:2006 Food safety management systems – Reguirements for any organization in the food chain
  • EN ISO/IEC 17025:2005 General requirements on testing and calibration laboratories

Web sources

Legislation – full text


Lectures (English version will be provided on request)


These pages are intended only for education !

ICT Prague:

Lectures will start in February 2015.



University of chemistry and technology, Prague 

Department of food analysis and nutrition, Technicka 3, 16628 Praha 6 
Buiding B, room 137, phone 220 443 057 (prof. Kocourek)