1 March 2016
The Fresh Produce Safety Centre is running a professional development event to improve understanding and utilisation of fresh produce testing for food safety.
Posts from the ‘Chemical Residues’ Category
1 March 2016
Ministry for Primary Industries: Domestic and international consumers of New Zealand food should take confidence in the way the criminal blackmail threat to contaminate infant and other formula with 1080 was handled, MPI Director-General Martyn Dunne said today.
“What we saw in response to this threat was multiple government agencies working together with dairy companies and retailers with a common purpose – to protect consumers.” Mr Dunne was commenting following the guilty plea in Auckland High Court today to 2 counts of blackmail.
South China Morning Post: Longstanding fears over food safety standards on the mainland -
including frequent reports of residue left on domestic fruit after the excessive use of pesticides and swelling and ripening agents - have led to a craze among China's growing middle class for imported prime fruits in recent years.
Avocados shipped in from Mexico were now the fastest increasing item, said Mabel Zhuang, China consultant of the global fresh produce trade organisation, Produce Marketing Association.
There’s a lot of people responsible for grower, packer or processor quality assurance and food safety who are not technically trained in QA and food safety. That’s just a fact of life that reflects the size, structure and necessities of many fresh produce businesses – small, family and tight. It’s also the reason why some QA standards and customers insist on a minimum level of training for the person(s) responsible for managing food safety in the business, with some now also providing the required training.
Growers are always quick to make the distinction. There’s a big difference between foodborne illness due to microbiological contamination and exceeding the Maximum Residue Limit (MRL) for an agricultural chemical. The smallest traces of a human pathogen can lead to much suffering, even death, but the many-fold human safety buffer built in to the regulatory pesticide limits means that many, many kilograms, if not tonnes, of offending fruit or vegetable would need to be consumed before ill effects from the pesticide are suffered.
The European Commission (EC) has lowered the maximum residue levels (MRLs) for two disinfectants used in the food industry, with the new regulation due to enter into force next year. As a result, the fresh produce trade may need to adjust its current usage practices or explore the use of alternative products.
Confused by the chemical jargon? Don’t understand the registration process?
Agricultural chemicals, whether they be for conventional production systems, organic production systems or both, must be registered by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) before they can be legally supplied, sold or used in Australia.
The results of the EU coordinated programme showed that 98.1% of the samples analysed contained residue levels within permissible limits and that 53.4% of samples contained no measurable residues at all. The foods with the highest MRL exceedance rates were spinach (6.5%), beans with pods (4.1%), oranges (2.5%), cucumbers (2.1%) and rice (2%). The foods with the lowest MRL exceedance rates were wheat flour (0.3%) and potatoes (0.6%).
To read the full article and report, please click here
Source : www.efsa.europa.eu
Asparagus by Steve Snodgrass 2011, Some Rights Reserved (CC BY 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/9kC9GL