December Food Safety News and Industry Round-up
As the year and decade draw to a close new findings released indicate that 1 in 3 UK consumers are concerned about food safety, STEC has become the third most common cause of foodborne disease, and African Swine Fever has continued it’s spread across Asia, not to mention significant updates from the FDA, UK government, and important trade news.
Watch the video industry round-up for more on each of these stories, and enjoy the transcript below with sources for more detailed reading.
EFSA revise most common causes of foodborne diseases
A joint annual report from the European Food Safety Authority and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control revealed that the number of Shiga toxin-producing E.coli infections in Europe jumped with a 37% increase in 2018 to become the third most common cause of foodborne disease.
Campylobacteriosis remains the most common cause causing almost 70% of cases with 21,000 hospitalizations and 60 deaths, while salmonellosis was second with more than 16,500 hospitalizations and 119 deaths.
UK plans to use EU food safety regulations post-Brexit
Prior to the UK general election the Department of Environment Food & Rural affairs claimed that it would use the EU’s smarter rules for safer food (SRSF) package.
This package t asks a risk-based approach to animal, plant and public health protection and builds on 3 principle EU regulations:
• Official Controls Regulation (EU) 2017/625: how controls across the agri-food chain will be monitored and enforced – applies from 14 December 2019
• Plant Health Regulation (EU) 2016/2031: controls for protecting plants from disease and pests – applies from 14 December 2019
• Animal Health Regulation (EU) 2016/429: a framework for the principles of European animal health – applies from 21 April 2021.
UK consumer habits survey shows 1 in 3 are concerned about food safety
A report by Lloyd’s Register claims that one in three UK shoppers are concerned about food safety, and one in five have swapped brands in the last year due to a food safety scare, with 72% expecting food retailers and outlets to know the precise ingredients of all products sold.
The report which details consumers habits is free to access, and a link to can be found in the transcript of this video.
BRCGS and SALSA announce partnership
The BRCGS has announced a collaboration with the Safe and Local Supplier Approval, the UK food certification scheme for smaller food producers and processors, otherwise known as SALSA.
The partnership intends to allow for an easier transition from SALSA to the BRCGS START! Programme.
FDA update free-to-use Food Defense Plan Builder
Safefood 360° users will already have their Food Defense Plans built into the platform, but for those businesses that have not yet created them or need assistance in doing so, the FDA has launched version 2 of its free to use Food Defense Plan Builder.
When fully complete the tool gives a complete report that is compliant existing FDA’s regulation and guidance on food defence.
EU pork exports grow 37%
It was announced that EU pork exports have recorded their strongest growth so far in 2019, rising 37% year on year. The growth has been fuelled by exports to China doubling as a result of the spread of African Swine Fever
EFSA open for comments on Ochratoxin A
The European Food Safety Authority is seeking feedback on the public health risks for Ochratoxin A. The mycotoxin was previously assessed in 2006 but more recent data suggests it might be genotoxic and carcinogenic . Comments are invited until January 24th, 2020.
US and China agree ‘Phase One’ trade deal
The US government and China have agreed on a ‘Phase One’ of a trade deal that will allow China to make enhanced purchases of US goods and services, including agriculture.
The announcement of the deal partially resolves the trade battle between the countries and if formally ratified, should bring Chinese purchases of US goods and services to $200bn over 2 years.
It’s already estimated the market alone could be worth $23bn to US dairy over the coming decade.
US federal court makes a ruling in plant-based labeling
The US federal court has dismissed calls to ban the term veggie burger.
The decision follows moves in some US states that had already passed strict laws banning plat-based companies using terms such as burger, sausage, and roast.
Australia introduces Dairy Code of Conduct
Starting January 1st, 2020, Australian Farmers will have a new rule book that will allow them to remain competitive.
The Dairy Code of Conduct seeks to address an imbalance between dairy farmers and processors through a variety of measures and includes a dispute resolution process.
Indonesia reports first cause of African Swine Fever
On December 12th, Indonesia has confirmed its first case of African Swine Fever in the North Sumatra Province. It is the latest country in Asia to be affected since the first case of outbreak in China in August 2018 was announced.
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