Bread & Flour Regulations

There is a long history of specific regulation for bread and flour in the United Kingdom, dating back to at least the reign of King Edward 1st in the thirteenth century. The sector is still controlled by the Bread and Flour Regulations, although some the provisions have been overtaken by more general legislation on additives and weights and measures.

The Bread and Flour regulations specify that four vitamins and minerals must be added to all white and brown flour, but not wholemeal. These are calcium, iron, thiamine and niacin. These requirements were introduced in the middle of the 20th century to ensure that these nutrients were being consumed in sufficient quantity. The position was reviewed by government advisory committees at the end of the 1990s, reaching the conclusion that this statutory addition of nutrients continued to play an important part in the overall diet. Because flour is defined as containing these nutrients, it is not required to label them as ingredients, though this is likely to change in the future with the implementation of the Food Information Regulations (FIR) 2013.