Posts from the "Food (Safety) Standards" category

Food Standards releases revised frozen berry risk statement, writes Richard Bennett

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has released its risk statement on ready-to-eat (RTE) frozen berries and hepatitis A virus (HAV) following an extensive review of the incident involving Patties Foods. Using an internationally recognised food safety risk assessment approach, FSANZ has concluded that “…hepatitis A virus in RTE berries produced and handled under Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and Good Hygienic Practices (GHP) is not a medium to high risk to public health.”

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Take a deep breath and reflect on the hep A saga, suggests Richard Bennett

I’ve given a few presentations over recent years about crisis management, starting with the need to prevent a crisis as much as possible by having the right attitude towards food safety backed up with the necessary systems. I put attitude first for a reason.

The next stage is to be prepared. Despite the best prevention systems and intentions, glitches happen and you might find yourself in need of a plan to manage the unthinkable. Good prevention and preparation will make all the difference to response and recovery. There’s plenty of evidence to show that resilience – the ability to bounce back – is almost directly related to how you respond, which is directly related to what you have done to prevent and prepare.

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Food safety expert says frozen berries hepatitis crisis a ‘wake-up call’ for fresh produce supply chain

Melbourne, AU. — A food safety expert has urged companies across the fresh fruit, vegetable and nutsupply chain to redouble their food safety efforts in the face of an outbreak of foodborne illness attributed to hepatitis A virus (HAV), which has left at least 10 people infected in Australia.

Richard Bennett, Technology Manager at the Fresh Produce Safety Centre Australia-New Zealand (FPSC), has authored a fact sheet to help both industry and consumers to understand the food safety issues and dispel some of the myths associated with the current frozen berries hepatitis crisis.

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NZ: Food Act Consultation Underway

Horticulture New Zealand: Consultation on the proposed regulations for the Food Act 2014 is now under way. The Ministry for Primary Industries is holding public meetings around the country to allow the community to consider a wide range of issues around how the Act will be administered when it comes fully into force by 1 March 2016. The Act will apply to around 85,000 food premises, growers and food importers, and up to 200,000 sellers of food.
The proposals cover a wide range of areas to bring the Act into operation, including requirements for registration and verification (auditing) of businesses, requirements to ensure food is safe and suitable, requirements for importers of food, cost recovery, infringements and exemptions.
Click here to read this article from Horticulture New Zealand.
Click here to access the Consultation documents and submission form from MPI.

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NZ: Does my food business need a food recall plan?

NZ MPI: Even within the best managed food business, an issue involving the safety of a food product may occur. This could be the result of a packaging defect, a preservation failure, a production problem, contaminated ingredients, sabotage or inadequate labelling. It is important that food businesses assume that a food safety issue may arise with their products and, therefore, plan ahead. These systems and plans should be periodically tested to ensure that they are effective and remove the unsafe product from consumers and/or the distribution chain.
Click here to access the Ministry for Primary Industries Recall Guidance Material.

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NZ: Fruit producers to face higher fees

Farmers, fruit-growers and other food producers could feel a pinch, with the government looking to hike its fees for biosecurity and food safety services.
The Ministry for Primary Industries is consulting on a plan to recover an extra 12.8 million dollars a year for its pest-prevention and safety systems. Food Safety Minister Jo Goodhew says the changes will vary between food sectors.
Click here to read the full article from Newstalk.
Click here to read the media release from the Ministry for Primary Industries.

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A-NZ: Consultation on proposed approach to next stage of a review on micro limits

​Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) today released a consultation paper on the proposed approach to the next phase of a review of microbiological limits in the Food Standards Code.
FSANZ Acting Chief Executive Officer Dr Marion Healy said the aim of the review was to ensure the limits are practical and clear for both industry and enforcement agencies and consistent with contemporary practices.
“The limits in the code were set before 2000 and since that time approaches to food safety have evolved, along with our understanding of how to manage pathogens in the food chain,” Dr Healy said.
Click here to read the full media release and to access the consultation paper and directions for making a submission.

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Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) recognises SQF Scope Extension for Storage and Distribution

The GFSI Board of Directors is pleased to announce that SQF has achieved recognition against the Guidance Document Sixth Edition for the scope of Storage and Distribution (J). This is in addition to the scopes for which SQF has already achieved GFSI recognition (AI, BI, C, D, EI, EII, EIII, EIV, F, L and M). The GFSI Guidance Document’s Scope J, Provision of Storage and Distribution Services, is the latest extension to the scopes covered by the GFSI benchmarking requirements, and includes the management of safety schemes for storage facilities and the distribution vehicles for food and feed.
Click here to read the full article from the Global Food Safety Initiative.

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BRC publish revised Global Standard for Food Safety

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) has published the seventh issue of its internationally recognised BRC Global Standard for Food Safety on 7 January 2015, and audits against Issue 7 will begin in July 2015.
The BRC Global Standards are internationally recognised as the market leaders setting the benchmark for good manufacturing practices in food, packaging, storage and distribution, agents and brokers, and consumer products. Certification enables customers to have confidence in their suppliers, and helps suppliers by allowing them to show they are maintaining high standards of safety, quality and legal compliance.
Click here to read the full article from the British Retail Consortium.

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Getting Your Claims Right – A guide to complying with the Nutrition, Health and Related Claims Standard of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code

This document, developed by the Implementation Subcommittee for Food Regulation (ISFR), provides guidance on how to comply with the Nutrition, Health and Related Claims Standard (Standard 1.2.7) in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (the Food Standards Code).
Click here to download a copy of the guide from the FSANZ website.

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