Decoding food law in times of food (r)evolutions

Publication by Aude Mahy (DALDEWOLF) of the book : “Droit alimentaire – Approche pragmatique de la réglementation belge et européenne” (coll. Droit Actuel, Ed. Larcier, 592 pages).

 The food industry is the most important economic sector in Europe and in Belgium, but also the most regulated one. An in-depth understanding of the whys and wherefores of this field of law is key to better build up a sustainable food business and better prevent incidents which could instantly destroy a company’s reputation.

MAHY A., "Droit alimentaire - Approche pragmatique de la réglementation belge et européenne" (coll. Droit Actuel, Ed. Larcier, 592 pages).Nevertheless, as of today, food law is not taught in any Belgian law school, and the legislation is not codified yet. Finding one’s way through the maze of the applicable rules and avoiding pitfalls are challenging, for both food business operators and legal practitioners.

This gap is now filled thanks to the remarkable work of Aude Mahy, DALDEWOLF’s partner specializing in food law. Her book will rapidly become the reference in the field.

Food law notably comprises consumer law, criminal law, public law and trade law. According to Aude Mahy, “dealing with food law requires to grasp the evolving concept of the precautionary principle and how its application may cope with the necessary need of legal security. This goes far beyond the mere reading of the law.”

Comprehensive but pragmatic, the book aims at creating the foundation for a common language between quality and legal departments to ensure a smooth internal communication and a more effective food crisis preparedness.

With a foreword written by Christian Vrydaghs, director emeritus of the legal department of the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC) in Belgium, this handbook, the first of its kind in the country, will constitute an invaluable tool for any business in the food sector.

DALDEWOLF is particularly proud of Aude Mahy’s achievement” declares the firm’s Managing Partner, Patrick De Wolf. “The publication of this reference book reinforces the position of our practice in EU law and regulatory, which forms, along with complex litigation & arbitration, one of the strengths of our firm.”

Arnaud Hoc, scientific director of the collection, is also delighted: “This publication perfectly fits with the spirit of our collection, which aims at making functional fields of law that are of societal relevance more accessible.

The food sector is constantly evolving, whether through consumer behaviour or innovative manufacturing technologies,” says Aude Mahy. “In this ever-changing sector, one may anticipate an increase in the number of transnational food crises put in the public eye, given the growing scrutiny dedicated to food safety, and more generally, to food compliance.”