Food controls in Europe declining, says watchdog BEUC

According to a new report published by consumer group BEUC, the number of food controls and the resources allocated to them are “dwindling” across Europe.

All EU member states are required by law to report on their inspection activities every year, but the BEUC has reported that national governments are “cutting corners” on food safety.

inspectors  EWFC  EU  controls  BEUC

22-10-2019 22:Oct:nd
 

USA poll: Americans overwhelmingly oppose USDA’s proposal to relax Food Safety inspections in pig slaughter plants

By an overwhelming 28-point margin (64% to 36%), Americans opposed the USDA’s proposal to eliminate the speed limits on pig slaughter lines. Current law limits line speeds to 1,106 pigs per hour; the USDA proposal would remove all speed limits.

A stunning 70 percent of Midwesterners—those closest to the pig slaughter industry—opposed this proposed change. Americans rejected two other major proposed changes to pig slaughter inspections—reducing the number of government inspectors in the plants and allowing companies to design their own food safety testing programs—by even larger margins. Almost three in four respondents (73%) opposed reducing the number of government inspectors on pig slaughter lines. Seven in ten (70%) rejected allowing companies to design their own microbiological testing programs to measure food safety, rather than requiring all companies to meet the same standard.

USA  report  official controls  inspectors  foodsafety

04-08-2019 18:Aug:th
 

EFSA issues new advice on phosphates in foods

Phosphates are essential nutrients (a form of phosphorus), which are present naturally in the human body and are an essential part of our diet. A group of substances commonly referred to as “phosphates” are authorised as food additives in the European Union.
They are added to a wide range of foods for “technological” functions and appear on labels as "emulsifiers", "antioxidants".
Some of them can and may be used in foods for infants and young children.

First ‘combined’ safe intake for phosphates

a spokesperson said: “The panel has re-assessed the safety of phosphates and derived, for the first time, a group acceptable daily intake [ADI] of 40 milligrams per kilogram of body weight [mg/kg bw] per day. “Because phosphates are also nutrients and essential to our diets, in our approach we defined an ADI which considers the likely phosphorus intake from various sources, including natural sources and food additives.”
The ADI corresponds to an intake of 2.8 grams of phosphorus per day for an average adult weighing 70kg.
EFSA stated further: “Importantly, the ADI does not apply to people with moderate to severe reduction in kidney function, which is considered a vulnerable population group. This conclusion is based on the recognised effect of high phosphate intake on the kidney.”

regulations  HACCP  foodsafety  EU  EFSA

28-06-2019 23:Jun:th
 

OVER €100 MILLION WORTH OF FAKE FOOD AND DRINKS SEIZED IN LATEST EUROPOL-INTERPOL OPERATION

image1 0More than €100 million worth of potentially dangerous food and drinks was seized in the latest Operation OPSON, coordinated by Europol’s Intellectual Property Crime Coordination Centre and INTERPOL. 672 individuals were arrested so far, with investigations ongoing in many countries.

Police, customs, national food regulatory authorities and private sector partners across 78 countries* took part in the five-month OPSON VIII operation which ran from December 2018 through April 2019.

official controls  inspectors  foodsafety  europol  europe  EU

22-06-2019 12:Jun:nd
 

The burden of foodborne diseases in the WHO European Region (2017)

The first estimates of the global and regional burden of foodborne disease, published by WHO in December 2015, show that the burden is significant throughout the world. This report presents data for the WHO European Region. Every year, more than 23 million people fall ill from eating contaminated food, resulting in 5000 deaths and more than 400 000 disability-adjusted life years. The most frequent causes of foodborne disease are diarrhoeal disease agents, the most common being Norovirus followed by Campylobacter spp. Non-typhoidal Salmonella spp. are responsible for the majority of deaths. Non-typhoidal Salmonella spp. followed by Campylobacter spp. cause the highest burden; the parasitic disease toxoplasmosis, which can cause severe damage to unborn children and immunodeficient patients, represents the third highest burden of foodborne disease. These figures indicate the need for strengthened prevention, surveillance and management of foodborne disease in the European Region, including risk communication, awareness-raising and consumer education. Furthermore, the data can be used to guide food safety policymaking and decision-making, including prioritization, at national and regional levels. WHO is committed to working with its Member States and partners to strengthen prevention, detection and management of food safety risks, with the overall aim of lowering the burden of foodborne disease.

http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/402989/50607-WHO-Food-Safety-publicationV4_Web.pdf?ua=1 

WHO  foodsafety  europe

14-06-2019 12:Jun:th
 

USA pork industry soon will have more power over meat inspections

USDA estimates that number of federal inspectors would shrink from 365 to 218

The Trump administration plans to shift much of the power and responsibility for food safety inspections in hog plants to the pork industry as early as May, cutting the number of federal inspectors by about 40 percent and replacing them with plant employees.

Under the proposed new inspection system, the responsibility for identifying diseased and contaminated pork would be shared with plant employees, whose training would be at the discretion of plant owners. There would be no limits on slaughter-line speeds.
The new pork inspection system would accelerate the federal government’s move toward delegating inspections to the livestock industry. During the Obama administration, poultry plant owners were given more power over safety inspections, although that administration canceled plans to increase line speeds. The Trump administration in September allowed some poultry plants to increase line speeds.
The Trump administration also is working to shift inspection of beef to plant owners. Agriculture Department officials are scheduled next month to discuss the proposed changes with the meat industry.

USA  regulations  official controls  inspectors

05-04-2019 13:Apr:th
 
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