Food industry welcomes nanotechnology debate

Posted by Isobel Drake on 24th March 2009

The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC), which represents food and beverage manufacturers, has welcomed a public debate on the nanotechnology, which will kick off with the Nanodialogue – Nanotech and Food Regulation conference in Melbourne tomorrow, AFGC Chief Executive Kate Carnell said today.

“We are pleased that Choice has accepted the invitation to attend this meeting and to participate in the discussions,” she said. “The food and grocery industry is not an advocate for any particular technology – each will be judged on its merits and particularly on how it might bring benefits to consumers.”

“More importantly, each technology must be assessed carefully by food regulators to ensure its safety and to determine any specific labelling requirements,” Ms Carnell added. “We are not aware of nanotechnology currently being used in Australian food and grocery manufactured products, but clearly the industry is considering what opportunities may exist.”

Any new products would be required to undergo a safety assessment by FSANZ and may need to have specific labelling requirements.

“In the end the food industry will listen to its consumers, and ensure products provided meet all their needs. They will be safe and they will be labelled so consumers can make informed choices,” Ms Carnell concluded.

Food regulatory body FSANZ is currently reviewing its requirements for foods using nanotechnology.