Selected news, views and issues from ‘field to fork’
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In this month’s edition:
1. Local authorities to test for lamb meat substitution
2. New European horse meat tests
3. US study finds Customers prefer restaurants that offer nutrition facts & healthful foods
4. Fish: The most food safety incidents recorded in 2013
5. Businesses to pay for Food Hygiene Inspections
6. EFSA Issues Scientific Opinion on Risks Posed by Salmonella, Norovirus in Leafy Greens
7. Invisible Label Will Protect Olive Oil From Counterfeiters
8. The clock is ticking: Act now on FIC/ FIR label changes
9. Responsible Marketing and Food Labelling – CIM Research Findings
10. UK FSA Food and Allergy Alerts (April '14):
The FSA has announced an additional programme of priority testing of lamb dishes from takeaway restaurants across the UK following evidence of ongoing substitution of lamb for cheaper meats such as beef and chicken. An FSA review of local authority sampling data, from July to December 2013, found that 43 out of 145 samples of lamb takeaway meals contained meat other than lamb. In total, 25 of these samples were found to contain only beef. Other meat species identified included chicken and turkey. No samples were found to contain horse meat.
Further information available at: http://www.food.gov.uk/news-updates/news/2014/apr/testing#.U1fLBFJ8PIU
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) confirmed on the 14th April details of a new round of tests of beef products for horse meat contamination. The tests have been requested by the European Commission as part of the follow-up to last year’s horse meat incident where a number of beef products sold across Europe were found to have been deliberately adulterated with horse meat.
The testing is not based on any new intelligence about food fraud but has been requested as part of the on-going work to ensure the problems discovered last year do not reoccur.
For further information please visit: http://www.food.gov.uk/news-updates/news/2014/apr/european-horse-meat-tests#.U1fO8VJ8PIU
Customers are more likely to frequent restaurants that provide both healthful foods and nutrition information, according to researchers. "The Affordable Care Act has mandated that chain restaurants provide nutrition information to customers," said an author. "Many restaurants had been fighting this legislation because they thought they would lose customers if the customers knew how unhealthy their food was. We found that customers perceive restaurants to be socially responsible when they are provided with nutrition facts and healthful options and, therefore, are more likely to patronize those restaurants."
Read the full article at: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/14
Fish was the commodity for which the most food safety incidents were recorded in 2012-2013, according to data recorded by HorizonScan, a global food safety tool developed by Leatherhead Food Research and the Food Environment Research Agency (Fera), to give the industry an overview of potential food safety hazards.
More information at: http://www.leatherheadfood.com/fish-the-most-food-safety-incidents-recorded-in-2013
The CIEH has warned that to maintain food safety standards all food businesses regardless of size may have to pay the costs of food hygiene inspections. The warning comes as the European Commission recently debated changes to the EU official feed and food controls regulations that outline how competent authorities in member states enforce compliance with food law.
Further information available at: http://www.ehn-online.com/news/article.aspx?id=11346
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has released a Scientific Opinion on the risks to human health posed by Salmonella and Norovirus in leafy greens eaten raw as salads. The report is Part 2 of a series of Scientific Opinions evaluating the public health risks posed by pathogens that may contaminate food of non-animal origin, is the result of a request by the European Commission to the EFSA’s Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ).
Researchers from ETH have developed an invisible label which could guarantee that expensive olive oil isn't counterfeit or adulterated.
The worldwide need for anti-counterfeiting labels for food is substantial. In a joint operation in December 2013 and January 2014, Interpol and Europol confiscated more than 1,200 tonnes of counterfeit or substandard food and almost 430,000 litres of counterfeit beverages. The illegal trade is run by organised criminal groups that generate millions in profits, say the authorities. The confiscated goods also included more than 131,000 litres of oil and vinegar.
Food businesses need to re-think their labels fast if they don't want to be caught out by the new Food Information Regulations.
Just over half of people don’t understand food labelling, according to research by The Chartered Institute of Marketing. They want brand owners and retailers rather than government to do more to explain what is in products.
Read more on the research at: http://www.cim.co.uk/Research/EthicsAndFoodLabelling.aspx
Feature report in marketing week: http://www.marketingweek.co.uk/trends/consumers-confused-over-food-labelling/4009735.article
29/04 The Engine Shed recalls Organic Tofu
The Engine Shed has recalled packs of its vacuum-packed Organic Tofu that were produced with inadequate controlling factors to prevent the growth and toxin production of Clostridium botulinum.
The following products that have use-by date between 31 March 2014 and 23 May 2014 (inclusive) are being recalled:
• Organic Plain Tofu, 300g
• Organic Plain Tofu, 1kg
• Organic Smoked Tofu, 250g
• Organic Tofu Burgers, 250g
17/04 Sainsbury's recalls its SO Organic Sultanas
Sainsbury’s is recalling all date codes of its SO Organic Sultanas on a precautionary basis, because salmonella has been found during routine testing.
The products being recalled is:
Product: SO Organic Sultanas 500g
Pack sizes: 500g
Barcode number: 0000001205312
‘Best before’ dates: All date codes
09/04 Munchy Seeds Honey Seeds recalled
Lawncourt Harvest Ltd has recalled tubs of Munchy Seeds Honey Seeds with a 'best before' date of 19 September 2014 and 24 September 2014 because the product may contain small stones and pieces of glass.
The product recalled from customers is:
Product: Munchy Seeds Honey Seeds
Pack sizes: 160g tub and 420g tub
‘Best before’ date: 19 September 2014 and 24 September 2014
25/04 ELAKKIA Jaffna Mixture recalled
Ruby's Food Products Ltd has recalled all packs of ELAKKIA Jaffna Mixture, because the product contains peanuts, cashew nuts and wheat, which are not mentioned on the label.
Product name: ELAKKIA Jaffna Mixture
Pack size: 175g and 450g
'Best before' date: all date codes up to and including 8 April 2015
No other Ruby's Food Products Ltd products are known to be affected.
16/04 Lidl Ocean Sea Rollmops recalled.
Lidl UK is recalling jars of its Ocean Sea Rollmops because mustard is not mentioned in English on the label. This means the product is a possible health risk for those with an allergy to mustard. In addition, the label does not mention fish as an ingredient in English, although the product label does show an image of prepared fish.
Only jars without a label in English are being recalled.
Product name: Lidl Ocean Sea Rollmops
Pack size: 500g, glass jar
'Best before' end: all dates
Batch code: all codes
16/04 Sugar Coated Mixed Fruit recalled
Longdan Ltd is recalling a batch of Sugar Coated Mixed Fruit with a 'best before' end date of June 2014 because it contains sulphites which are not mentioned on the product label.
Product name: Sugar Coated Mixed Fruit
Pack size: 600g (plastic flower-shaped container)
'Best before' end: June 2014
No other Longdan Ltd products are known to be affected