Calorie labelling in the out of home sector

Ian Woodland 2022

Ian Woodland
Director of Business Services, Assurity Consulting
15th March 2022

Food that is:

  • sold for immediate consumption;
  • not prepacked; and
  • not considered exempt food under the Regulations.

The Regulations will be known as the ‘The Calorie Labelling (Out of Home Sector) (England) Regulations 2021.’ 

The out of home sector is generally considered to be any outlet where food or drink is prepared in a way that means it is ready for immediate consumption, on or off the premises. It will include restaurants and cafés in workplaces, and educational institutions for students who are 18 years old or over, where food or drink is provided by a contract caterer with 250 or more employees. It won’t however include educational institutions for students who are 18 years old or over where the food and drink is provided ‘in house’ by the institution to the students or workplaces that only provide food and drink ‘in house’ to employees. There are some other establishments that are also exempt from these Regulations.

 Where the Regulations apply, a food business will be required to:

  • Display the energy content of the food in kilocalories (kcal);
  • Reference the size of the portion to which the calorie information relates; and
  • Display the statement that ‘adults need around 2000 kcal a day’ (otherwise known as the ‘statement of daily calorie needs’).

 The Regulations will be enforced by local authorities and they will be checking:

  • The presence of calorie information on food and drink items that are in scope of the policy;
  • The calorie information is displayed as per the requirements under the Regulation;
  • The method businesses have used to calculate calorie content is considered appropriate and reliable; and
  • The calorie information is appropriately displayed on any online presence that the business may have, including third party delivery platforms. 

Failure to comply with the Regulations could result in an improvement notice being served on the proprietor of the food business. Failure to comply with the improvement notice could result in a fixed monetary penalty of £2,500 or criminal prosecution, although prosecutions are expected to be rare.

Smaller food businesses are not subject to this regulatory requirement however they are encouraged to voluntarily adopt calorie labelling, as it is expected to be extended to these businesses in the future. The guidance document for these Regulations can be found at:

Our team of experienced food safety consultants can help, advise and support you to comply with these new Regulations or any other food safety matter. To find out more, please read our food hygiene & safety service page.