Ethanol Labelling Standard

Fuel suppliers who supply petrol containing ethanol must comply with the Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Determination 2003 (labelling standard). The labelling standard is in place to inform consumers that the fuel they are purchasing contains ethanol.

It is an offence under section 12A of Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000 (the Act) to supply fuel that does not comply with fuel quality information standards. The Australian Government capped the level of ethanol that can be added to petrol at 10% in July 2003. This was the result of vehicle testing that showed petrol containing ethanol blends of 20% or more may cause engine problems in some older vehicles.

A requirement to label ethanol blend petrol was introduced in 1 March 2004 and amended in January 2006 to simplify the labelling standard.

An ethanol labelling information sheet summarising the obligations of fuel suppliers is available and is provided for information only. For a complete understanding of the obligations of fuel suppliers, reference should be made to the ethanol labelling standards and legal advice should be sought if necessary.

An awareness campaign has been launched for suppliers of ethanol blends. Fuel pump labels are also available for fuel suppliers. These labels can be used to advise consumers and use the words 'This fuel contains up to 10% ethanol'. To obtain labels, write to fuel.quality@environment.gov.au telling us your postal address and the number of labels you require.

At service stations

All pumps dispensing ethanol blend petrol must clearly display one of the following:

  • the words 'Contains up to x% ethanol' (where x is no less than the percentage of ethanol in the petrol); or
  • the words 'Contains y% ethanol' (where y is the percentage of ethanol in the petrol).

At other places of retail supply

If an ethanol blend is supplied other than from a service station, the buyer must be given a document that prominently includes the same words as above that must be displayed for ethanol blends sold at service stations.

If the buyer is present when the ethanol blend is supplied, the words must appear on each container of ethanol blend so that the words can easily be read by the buyer.

Supply of ethanol blend to retailer

If an ethanol blend is supplied to a retailer, at the time of supply the retailer must be given a document that prominently displays:

  • a statement that the ethanol blend may contain up to and including 10% ethanol; and
  • a statement that the ethanol blend is the subject of the Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Determination 2003.

Further information

Disclaimer

The information contained on this page is of a general nature only and should be read in conjunction with the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000, Fuel Quality Standards Regulations 2001, Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Determination 2003, and the Fuel Standard (Petrol) Determination 2001. Fuel suppliers may wish to seek legal advice about their obligations under this legislation.