New food regulation developments announced by FSANZ

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 16th January 2012

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is proposing an examination of options for primary production and processing requirements for the raw horticultural produce sector. The examination may result in the development of a new standard.

The proposal, which will be of particular relevance to those who produce dried fruit and vegetables, is expected to be preliminarily open for public comment between mid-March 2012 and mid-May 2012.

Labelling requirements for food for catering purposes and retail sale

FSANZ had originally recommended prescribing the provision of use-by date information for food exempt from bearing a label when required for health or safety reasons (e.g. deli products in an assisted service display cabinet).

However, given concerns raised during the review process, FSANZ excised this. At the time, FSANZ stated that a future proposal would be prepared to resolve this outstanding issue about date marking.

Following targeted consultation with the food industry and jurisdictions, FSANZ says it has been unable find any evidence of a problem associated with foods exempt from bearing a label that could be resolved by requiring the provision of use-by date information.

According to FSANZ, Australian food suppliers currently have systems in place for managing possible food safety risks associated with foods exempt from bearing a label that often includes the provision of date marking information on pricing stickers.

On this basis, the FSANZ Board recently considered the need for a proposal to assess possible requirements for use-by date information for foods exempt from bearing a label and decided that no further action was required.

Call for submission on food derived from GM corn line

FSANZ has called for submissions on an application to change the Food Standards Code to allow for food derived from a corn line genetically modified to be tolerant to the herbicide glyphosate.

The application was received from Monsanto Australia Limited and seeks to vary Standard 1.5.2 – Food produced using Gene Technology, in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.”

FSANZ welcomes comments from government agencies, public health professionals, industry and the community on issues raised in the report. The period for submissions closes on 27 February 2012.