the european pet food industry


FEDIAF Code of Good Labelling Practice

Consumer advice about pet food is provided in many ways, via on-pack information or labelling, in addition to off-pack such as leaflets, websites, advertising etc. We have also developed the FEDIAF Code of Good Labelling Practice for Pet Food, a practical guide to the labelling of pet food and marketing, which is reviewed annually. The Code covers information on product use, control and enforcement, retail and marketing. It aims to ensure harmonised understanding throughout the EU.

The Code includes:

  • How should vitamins be labelled?
  • What traceability tools are available?
  • What does rich in beef mean?
  • Are health claims permitted and what are the rules?

The FEDIAF Guide is user friendly, includes a glossary, numerous examples and a reference list of applicable legislation.

EU Legislation & Co-Regulation

The Code should be used by companies and authorities alongside the EU legislation, to guarantee that products placed on the market are labelled according to all the legislation in force. In a Europe without borders, harmonised interpretation and application by all parties concerned is essential to ensure free movement of goods, a level playing field and consistent consumer information.

The Code was successfully developed in accordance with the EU co-regulation approach: European legislation empowers the representative trade association to explain the legal rules, give practical examples and help ensure that the legislation’s objectives are achieved. Such Guides, which are developed by industry,  are validated by the EU and Member States. 

Layman’s Guide

A specific "Layman's Guide" (which is also an annex to the Labelling Code), explains the complex information within the code. The Code is an important step by the industry to show its transparency to consumers.

Copies of the Code

Please click here for access to the English version of the Code.  FEDIAF will gradually provide other EU language versions of the Code on its website.  

Please be advised that this is protected by copyright. They may be duplicated for use in companies, by authorities or for private use. Any commercial use is prohibited and may only be allowed on a written application and after a written permission may have been granted by FEDIAF.

The publication of the Code was announced on the Commission's Midday Express of 8/12/2011 and the Code itself is also available officially: On the European Commission website and its title and reference were published in Official Journal C n° 358, p. 49

Understanding Pet Food Labels

FEDIAF has also developed a fact sheet to help explain this complex topic. You can read more in our Fact Sheet section here.