The Romanian Authority for Consumer Protection ANPC (Autoritatea Nationala pentru Protectia Consumatorilor) recently sanctioned companies for food labels that presented optional texts not translated into Romanian. The news came from the Authority's latest reports concerning control activities on all aspects of compliance of food products in Romania. Thereore about labeling, presentation, advertising and marketing of food products.
The legal basis for these measures is Ordonanţă nr. 21/1992, which in chapter 4 indicates as compulsory to translate all information relating to the product, including the commercial name, into Romanian.
"All information relating to products and services offered to consumers, the attached documents, including those concerning product safety information and use instructions, as well as contracts, including pre-formulated ones, must be written in Romanian, regardless of the country of origin, without excluding their presentation in other languages. "
The legislation is prior to Romania's entry into the European Union and specifically prior to Regulation EU 1169/2011 on food products labeling; therefore the complaints raised by the authorities could be considered contrary to the principle of free movement of goods.
Reg. EU 1169/2011 in fact states that all mandatory information must be presented in a language that is easily understood by the consumer, precisely Romanian for Romania, while it does not give specific indications on optional texts.
Food Compliance Solutions therefore suggests as a precaution for labels destined for Romania, to carefully evaluate the use of indications not translated into Romanian or alternatively to translate all the terms into Romanian.