The ultimate checklist to help you prepare for Natasha’s Law
Can you believe that we’re almost in September – making it just shy of five weeks until another big change for the hospitality sector, with the implementation of Natasha’s Law.
The impending pre-packed for direct sale requirement (PPDS) legislation has caused some frustrations though, with many operators highlighting grey areas that needed further clarification, but there have also been some opportunities to harness too!
Here is our ultimate checklist to ensure you’re feeling well prepared and confident come 1st October 2021:
1) Speak to your suppliers
Every touchpoint in the supply chain has a part to play in ensuring the data is accurate, robust and clear when it comes to PPDS.
Although some touchpoints may have more responsibility than others, it’s absolutely vital that operators are keeping close to each of their suppliers (including third party software and labelling providers).
Here are some top tips on what to bear in mind when speaking to suppliers:
- Understand the journey the data has taken to get to you
- How is the information being managed at each point of the chain?
- What support can they provide?
- How will the ingredients list be ordered?
- How will the allergens be emphasised?
- What happens when information changes?
2) Training and instilling confidence within the team
These changes are vast and important and have confused even the most clued up of experts at times over the past year. In order to have peace of mind that your employees understand what this change in legislation means, training is absolutely vital.
Once you’ve provided adequate training to your staff that makes them feel more confident in their understanding of Natasha’s Law, think about appointing an Allergen Champion.
Your Allergen Champion will become the main port of call if a consumer has questions or concerns and will be able to offer training to new starters, not only demonstrating your outlet is safe and takes allergens seriously, but also giving team members the opportunity to upskill and develop in an incredibly important area.
3) Investing in software and labelling solutions
We would highly recommend having software in place that is fully compliant with PPDS requirements. This will help to provide further peace of mind by minimising the risks of human error or inaccuracy.
There are lots of these systems on the market, including our Menu Planner tool – MyRecipe which is available to customers via our online shop, Bidfood Direct.
The beauty of this tool is that our product information is live and automatically updated, including allergen data, giving customers peace of mind that recipe profiles can be easily kept up to date at all times.
These systems are fantastic for helping you produce labels, but it’s also vital to have a good printer in place that can keep up with the level of label printing you will now need.
Think about the labels too – products will need to be stored in a variety of different temperature controlled environments, be it a chiller, a freezer or in the oven, so having labels that can withstand these is also important!
It may seem like a no brainer to some, but getting a practice run or two in will be a huge help. Trialling the new system for a few weeks to allow yourself room for error will definitely provide comfort to the team, so that they know exactly what they need to do once the legislation is implemented.
If you find something isn’t working or there is something you can’t find the answer to, make sure to pick up with an industry body like the Food Standards Agency to help provide clarity on this. After all, this is a new piece of legislation and there will no doubt be some teething issues!
5) Keep up to date with the FSA and review their tools and web advice regularly
The Food Standards Agency has been working on supporting guidance for businesses preparing to implement PPDS labelling.
Visit their website, for their full PPDS toolkit, sector specific guidance, online allergen training courses and many other resources.
And finally, we’re here to support you as best we can! We’re excited to be launching our ‘Making Sense of Natasha’s Law’ guide imminently, which we hope will provide the advice, hints and tips and clarity you need to prepare for October! Make sure you keep an eye on our Natasha’s Law web page to find more information on this.