Japan “liberates” vegan market with new packaging labeling amid regional health boom



November 23, 2021 — The Japanese government introduces new legislation on the labeling of plant-based food packaging as part of efforts to ease restrictions and increase consumer transparency.

At a press conference, government minister Taro Kono asserted that a lack of guidance is hampering the growth of the country’s increasingly lucrative plant market, and that a new base of labeling legislation “would free »Its potential.

Among Kono’s statements was assurances that any herbal labeling “will not be a problem if the phrase is not misleading.” To be more precise, if words such as “soy meat” and “no meat” are written together, there is no problem. “

In addition, products labeled as “100% plant-based will need to confirm whether they are derived from plants, including food additives”.

The stipulations follow legal battles in the EU, which last year saw the meat industry attempt to pass legislation on alternative vegan F&B producers that would take away their right to use words like “Sausage” or “hamburger” on their packaging.

The European Vegetarian Union recently called on the European Commission to harmonize the labeling rules for vegetarian and vegan foods. The renewed urgency comes as it has been a decade since the Consumer Food Information Regulations were enacted.

Next Meats is building an alternative protein factory and an R&D laboratory in Japan.The expansion of dietetic foods in Japan
The new guidelines aim to help consumers and industry develop the herbal sector, as Japan sees renewed interest in healthy food after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A host of herbal products seeking to meet this demand have recently entered the market, including Tokyo-based Next Meat, which this year announced the opening of an environmentally friendly production facility. next summer.

Dubbed the Next Factory, it will be built in Niigata, Japan, promising to be a “one stop shop” dedicated to alternative protein products and will include everything from an R&D lab to the production line.

The founders aim to stabilize the global supply chain for Next Meats products while reducing retail costs and strengthening the company’s R&D capabilities.

The company also unveiled vegan Japanese grilled yakiniku meat in Singapore this year. At the same time, Haofood’s peanut-based chicken made its debut in Chinese and Indonesian recipes through various partnerships with Shanghai catering.

Retail sales of meat substitutes in Asia-Pacific reached around US $ 1 billion in 2020, according to Innova Market Insights, which reports strong sales growth in this category, with a projected CAGR of 9.1 % in value and 8.65% in volume forecast for the period 2019 to 2022.

The market researcher also stressed that this was a global trend mainly driven by environmental concerns. The market research ranked “Shared Planet” among its top ten trends for 2022, noting that consumers now rank planetary health as their number one concern, overtaking personal health, which has been the top priority in recent years.

Edited by Louis Gore Langton

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