Bi-lingual ingredients, English and Welsh (or not!)

We’re in the process of re-designing the labels for the food products that we manufacture and are thinking about labelling in both English and Welsh.
Our market area is North and Mid Wales as well as Shropshire, Cheshire, Staffordshire amd Herefordshire.
We think that it’s really important that we have a strong Welsh identity but would be interested to hear peoples opinions on bi-lingual labels - positives and potential pitfalls!


It could put you in front of your competition, as it doesn’t seem to be very widespread so far. Although I have seen multilingual labelling in other languages. You will probably be a good judge of what the extra costs are likely to be.

Speaking as a layman, I guess that you would need to be very careful with accuracy for legal reasons.

Some one on here will have knowledge of (free?) help that is available with professional translations. If you don’t here back, I think I have a link to this from a social media announcement.


Any time I have a choice between something labelled in English only and something with Welsh on it, it’s a done deal for me… :slight_smile:


As a family food purchaser living on the Powys/Shropshire border a bi-lingual label would definitely appeal to me. Pob lwc


The only pitfalls I can imagine would be practical ones like either needing bigger labels to fit everything on (which may have a knock-on to the cost of packaging) or having to print very small to fit everything on (nooo, please, I don’t always have my specs with me! :wink: )
As John mentioned, accuracy (getting the translation correct) is also very important, and one little drawback you may come across is when there is a North and a South option, then which do you choose?!

Having said all that, I think bi-lingual labels are a great idea - go for it! :smiley:


The labels are a little bigger than version 1 (English only) but still only 135 x 55 mm - but amazing how much you can fit on there!

I’ve gone for North partly as we’re based there, it’s the version that we’ve been learning and of the ingredients that we use so far only milk has that North/South difference (but there may be others yet![quote=“aran, post:3, topic:12563”]
English only and something with Welsh on it,

Well we’ve looked at loads of layout options today and can fit in bi-lingual ingredients, allergen information, ‘vegetarian’ ‘palm-oil free’ bits and a couple of other things but unfortunately that is all on the back of the pack, will try to at least get something Welsh on the front![quote=“JohnYoung, post:2, topic:12563”]
very careful with accuracy for legal reasons.

Yes indeed, we’ve had conversations with trading standards who had previously approved our english only version so all hunky-dory there with the addition of Welsh


I’m not sure that this was the exact link that I was thinking of, but perhaps it might be of interest. I had it from a Facebook post by Menter Iaith Abertawe


I will also go for the Welsh version if faced with a choice (unless the price is wildly more expensive) but I don’t think you’re getting a fair and unbiased opinion on this forum.

I would definitely say ‘go for it’. Also I would include ‘y ddraig goch’ on there somewhere, that’s something visual that always draws my attention (make sure it’s facing the correct way).


Definitely go for it!

Oo-er…what’s the correct way?


The opposite way to how it is on the SSiW logo. :joy::wink::scream::smiling_imp:


It has to be a commercial decision so I wouldn’t necessarily follow my advice but I am not sure how many people really take note of what is on a label. I would suggest that there is more Welsh than English except for the things that people have to know eg protein, sugars and those could all be in English not Welsh. A QR code could link to an English version or a web label for those who want to know more. If you can determine where a batch is to go then you could go for varied labels with nearly all English if going to England. The very least would be a Welsh name for the product which would be acceptable anywhere, a Welsh dragon will help make people realise it is from Wales and most people should be happy with that. Just a few thoughts but it does cut to the very core of how Welsh will survive in the long term so interesting. However, don’t be a Welsh language warrior with your products, you have to sell them.

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Not to be a language warrior true. But I would have thought that provided anything that’s written in Welsh is also given in English, I’m not sure that anyone would have grounds for complaint.

And you might be surprised at the positive response you might get from England, if it made the product look a bit more “exotic”, especially in more up-market outlets.

When I was growing up (1950s and 60s) HP brown sauce bottles used to have part of the label in French. (“Cette sauce de haute qualite…” ) or something. And in those days, people didn’t go abroad so much, and if anything, looked down a bit on France, and yet this sauce was very popular.

As always, good design is key. It shouldn’t look too cluttered. A good example of minimalist Welsh on a food product that’s sold in England is Rachel’s Organic Butter. Not much Welsh, but it’s clearly there if you know what you are looking for.

(other butter brands are available :wink: ).


Companies in Latin America that export to the US and Europe do this to some degree or another all the time. Might be worth having a look at how they do it if you need ideas of how to get everything in there.


I think I’m right that milk only has the one Welsh word on it, or perhaps a sentence mentioning Welsh or local. I still like it though, and feel cheated with the milk that is delivered to my employers office just over the bridge. Also I love the Welsh on any DVLA stuff (only for Welsh addresses).

Well the redesign of the labels has been done and are now out with our products.
We realised the difficulty of going fully bi-lingual at short notice, especially with ingredients so, rather than go the whole hog now, we’ve used some Welsh on there, including a sentence that says that we’re working towards fully bi-lingual labels (which will be by the end of the year) and then we can take a little more time to get it right.

As an example, all our packaging is fully compostable, even though it’s a clear, plastic looking pack - I’ve seen a few possibilities for compostable bag - I could take a guess at this, leave it in English only, or get it formally translated (or take on board the opinion of a translator), so we’ll take our time and get all of these decisions made so that Welsh is used in the best way possible.

Many thanks for all of your input here.


Any pictures for us to see?

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compost = compost, so ‘gallu ei gompostio’???

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