95833 - National and European Union Food Law

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

The course aims to provide a comprehensive view of food law, enriched by extensive case law information, with constant attention to EU and comparative law.

Course contents

The Course aims to provide a full overview of food law.

EU-derived food law will be observed as a whole by examining its impact on the traditional system of rules governing contract law and civil liability. Both of these perspectives will be analyzed taking into account the articulation of the production system and the supply chain that leads from farm to fork, focusing on both business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) relationships.

Particular attention will be devoted to consumer protection both in the contractual dimension and in terms of safety, product quality and manufacturer liability. In this sense, some organic institutes of the consumer relationship emerge, declined according to the peculiarity of the food matter: unfair commercial practices, information poured into labeling, fulfillment of certification obligations. Alongside these profiles, will be treated the latest regulatory interventions that have affected the food matter, above all the new discipline of organic products, and more recent phenomena touched by food law, such as the so-called novel foods, nutraceutics and functional foods.

Specific attention will be paid to the analysis of case law, which will be conducted through the performance of research activities aimed at solving concrete cases.

The course tends to provide a comprehensive overview on issues related to food law. In particular, at the outcome of a reasoned analysis of legislative texts in the light of case law, it will be possible to identify the guidelines leading the multiple problems that arise in the field of manufacturer liability for damage caused by specific food products to reliable criteria, even in the hypothesis that, despite compliance with legislative standards, they are still harmful to people's health.

  • Fundamentals of private and public law
  • Sources of law and judicial system organization
  • Fundamentals of the law of obligations
  • Fundamentals of contract law
  • Fundamentals of tort law
  • Fundamentals of European Union law
  • Fundamental of consumer protection
  • Discipline of product liability
  • Discipline of product safety
  • Specificities of food law
  • Food law and EC Regulation No. 178/2002
  • Food Business Operator FBO
  • Food and medicinal products
  • European Food Safety Authority EFSA
  • Precautionary principle in food matters
  • Food safety and hygiene
  • Food consumer information and EU Regulation No. 1169/2011
  • Nutrition and health claims
  • Agricultural and food product market and quality systems in the European Union
  • Particular foods and materials and articles in contact with food
  • Regime of controls and system of sanctions
  • Manufacturer liability and consumer self-responsibility
  • Food distribution contracts and regulation of the agricultural and food products market


P. Borghi, L. Costato, S. Paganizza, S. Rizzoli, L. Salvi, Compendio di diritto alimentare, Wolters Kluwer, 2022, X ed.

Teaching methods

Lectures will be given by Prof. Enrico Al Mureden, chair of the Course, and Dr. Nicolò Cevolani.

The teaching will be divided into face-to-face lectures and collateral activities. All lectures will be recorded and made available to those who need to consult them even after they have taken place. In the frontal lectures, the systematic exposition of the topics covered by the Course will be conducted, according to the program above, and then space will be left, in relation to both the general and the special part, for the examination of case law on the individual topics addressed.

Attendees and those attending the course who wish to do so will be invited to actively participate in this case analysis, and, coordinated in small working groups, will be able to actively report and produce reports to illustrate the results obtained. There is also the possibility of taking part in mock trials, which will be conducted in the first and second part of the course and will constitute moments of synthesis of the case law analysis.

The proficiency examination will be conducted orally. The interview will cover the topics indicated in the "Program and Contents" section.

Assessment methods

Classes are held in the first semester, and therefore, those who obtain attendance certificates in the current academic year will only be able to take the entire exam starting in January.

The proficiency examination will be conducted orally. The interview will cover the topics indicated in the "Program and Contents" section.

The evaluation of the test will be made taking into consideration:

  • the knowledge of institutional profiles;
  • the ability to analyze jurisprudential and doctrinal orientations;
  • the ability to make connections between the different parts of the program;
  • the ability to develop critical arguments;
  • the articulation of the exposition;
  • the accuracy of the exposition.

The awarding of the final grade will be guided by the following criteria:

  • Sufficient or little more than sufficient preparation on the topics covered, poor critical ability, difficulty in using technical-legal language → 18-21;
  • Fair or fairly good preparation on the topics covered, fair critical ability, good use of technical-legal language → 22-25;
  • Good or more than good preparation on the topics covered, good critical ability, mastery of technical-legal language → 26-29;
  • Substantially comprehensive preparation on the topics covered, excellent critical ability, full command of technical-legal language → 30-30L.

Registration for the final examination must be made through the Almaesami application (https://almaesami.unibo.it/almaesami/welcome.htm).

Teaching tools

In order to facilitate the assimilation of concepts, including through the visualization of logical connections, the illustration of the institutes will be accompanied by the presentation of Power Point slides to support teaching. The materials will be made available on the Virtual platform.

Office hours

See the website of Enrico Al Mureden

See the website of Nicolò Cevolani