How Natasha’s Law applies to small business bakers
The new regulation applies to any food business in Wales, England, and Northern Ireland that produces pre-packed for direct sale (PPDS) food, including bakeries, cake shops, tea shops, cafés, in-store counters, and home bakers who sell food from home.
Foods is PPDS if it is packaged in the following:
The food is fully or partly enclosed by the packaging
The food cannot be altered without opening or changing the packaging.
The food is ready for sale to the final consumer
Examples include cakes wrapped in clingfilm, biscuits, desserts and:
Foods packaged and then sold elsewhere by the producer, eg at a stall
Free samples given to consumers that are pre-packed
PPDS food provided to schools, care homes or hospitals and other similar settings
PPDS foods sold at fetes and charity events (i.e. pre-packed Xmas cakes)
It is important to be aware of all your ingredients, especially when using pre-made flours, mixes and fillings. i.e. glace cherries contain more than just cherries and sugar.
Food is not PPDS if it is packaged in such a way that food can be altered without opening or changing the packet - i.e. cake in a cake box
Many small business bakers take commissions for special occasions such as birthdays and weddings. These items are normally delivered in a box with a lid and is not considered PPDS.
However, it is a requirement to attach a food allergen list to all goods made by small business bakers.
Working directly with individuals, couples or wedding/party planners, you’re reliant on them to inform you of any food allergen risks amongst guests. You may need to remind them to ask about guest food allergies in their invitations. If the occasion is a more informal affair, like a birthday party, you would normally provide clients with a list of the potential allergens in their finished creation, so that they can make their guests aware.
Many venues now ask for a full list of ingredients in the item delivered in addition to the allergen list. i.e. list of ingredients in a wedding cake delivered, including marzipan, fondant etc.
So, in a nutshell, the new regulations should not affect home bakers who only make to order, but will affect those bakers who provide goods to cake stalls etc.