12 January - 20 June 2016

Legislation headlines

6 March 13

**Horsemeat test results – Statement from Environment Secretary Owen Paterson
**Amendment to PGI ‘Melva de Andalucía’
**Protection of geographical indications ‘Queso Los Beyos’
**PGI sought for Stornoway black pudding
**Third FSA update on testing of beef products for horse DNA
**The Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013 - Consultation
**The withdrawal of the approval of the active substance didecyldimethylammonium chloride
**EU Health Commissioner insists Europe has one of the best food systems in the world
**Including diflubenzuron as an active substance
**Control plan - prevalence of fraudulent practices in the marketing of certain foods
**FSA - Update on EU sampling programme
**Scientific opinions

**Horsemeat test results – Statement from Environment Secretary Owen Paterson
On the 1 March Defra published a statement from Environment Secretary Owen Paterson in response to the third set of test results published by the FSA on horse meat testing.  The FSA state that:  “the vast majority (over 99%) of tests continue to show no horse DNA at or above the level of 1%. Today’s results show that four further products have been confirmed as containing horse DNA, since the previous set of industry results was announced last week. These four products are covered by 10 test results that show horse DNA at or above the 1% threshold. There are now 17 products confirmed as containing over 1% of horse DNA, which have been identified through the industry tests. A further two products have been identified through separate tests.  To date, no tests of products containing horse DNA have found the veterinary medicine phenylbutazone (bute).” Owen Paterson responded by stating: “The food industry and Food Standards Agency have moved very quickly to complete over 5000 tests in a very short space of time. Industry testing will continue and results will now be published on a quarterly basis.”

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**Amendment to PGI ‘Melva de Andalucía’
An amendment has been make to Spain’s application for the Protected Geographical Indication ‘Melva de Andalucía’.  Melva de Andalucia are preserved frigate tuna fillets, natural and in olive oil, produced using non-industrial methods. Amendments have been made to the description of the product, geographical area, proof of origin, method of production, labelling and national requirements.

**Protection of geographical indications ‘Queso Los Beyos’
Spain has applied for the Protected Geographical Indication ‘Queso Los Beyos’.  The cheese made from raw or pasteurised cow’s, sheep’s or goat’s milk, without mixing them together, using lactic coagulation; it is matured for a minimum period of 20 days, or 60 if it is made from raw milk, and must meet a number of specifications and characteristics.

**PGI sought for Stornoway black pudding
The BBC is reporting that a protected geographical indication has been sought for Stornoway black pudding.  According to the BBC website, a EU spokeswomen has spoken on BBC Radio Scotland saying that the registration process for Stornoway black pudding was months from being completed and is at the second consultation stage.    The initial campaign was launched in May by Labour’s Rhoda Grant.

**The Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013 - Consultation
The consultation will provide interested parties with the opportunity to comment on the proposed Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013.  The proposed Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013 will revoke the Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2010 and remake them with necessary amendments taking into account the following European regulations: Commission Regulation (EU) No 1258/2011, amending Regulation (EC) No 1881/2006 as regards maximum levels for nitrate in foodstuffs; and Commission Regulation (EU) No 610/2012 amending Regulation (EC) No 124/2009 setting maximum levels for the presence of coccidiostats and histomonostats in food resulting from the unavoidable carry-over of these substances in non-targeted feed.  The proposed Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013 will provide for the execution and enforcement of (EU) No 610/2012 and also introduce ambulatory reference provisions to include the Articles of (EC) 1881/2006 (previously only the Annex was included) and the Articles and Annex of (EC) No 124/2009. The proposed Contaminants in Food (Scotland) Regulations 2013 will also revoke domestic legislation on mineral hydrocarbons in food; and revoke and remake the Erucic Acid in Food (Scotland) Regulations 1977 as amended. The proposed changes to provisions in European legislation and in domestic legislation controlling erucic acid will be consolidated into a single set of contaminants in food regulations.

**The withdrawal of the approval of the active substance didecyldimethylammonium chloride
Commission Directive 2009/70/EC included didecyldimethylammonium chloride (DDAC) as active substance in Annex I to Council Directive 91/414/EEC of 15 July 1991 concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market, with the condition that the Member States concerned ensure that the notifier at whose request DDAC was included in that Annex provides further confirmatory information on the specification of that active substance, as manufactured, by 1 January 2010. On 25 October 2011, the notifier submitted additional information with a view to complying with the obligation to submit further information on the specification of the active substance, as manufactured, to the rapporteur Member State, the Netherlands.  The Netherlands assessed the additional information submitted by the notifier.  The Commission has come to the conclusion that the information submitted is incomplete and does not allow to conclude on the degree of purity and, in particular, on the identity and content of the impurities. It is appropriate to withdraw the approval of the active substance DDAC by deleting row 291 of Part A of the Annex to Implementing Regulation (EU) No 540/2011.

**EU Health Commissioner insists Europe has one of the best food systems in the world
Tonio Borg, the EU Health Commissioner has insisted Europe has "one of the best food systems in the world.”  Giving evidence to the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee on 28 February 2013, he insisted the horse meat incident was an issue of fraud and labelling, rather than food safety. The BBC state that he warned that the incident was already impacting the economy of the European food industry.  British Labour MEP Linda McAvan questioned his response asking why there was no new long-term testing regime was being implemented, noting that although his view is that there is nothing wrong with the systems, consumers are not thinking on the same lines.  The BBC report that “Christian Democrat MEP Corinne Lepage said that the crisis was being exacerbated by economic problems in many EU countries, where the number of inspectors had been cut.”  Mr Borg responded by saying: “we have not reduced the number of inspections and audits".

**Including diflubenzuron as an active substance
Diflubenzuron has been evaluated in accordance with Article 11(2) of Directive 98/8/EC for use in product- type 18, insecticides, acaricides and products to control other arthropods, as defined in Annex V to that Directive.  It appears from the evaluations that biocidal products used as insecticides, acaricides and products to control other arthropods and containing diflubenzuron may be expected to satisfy the requirements laid down in Article 5 of Directive 98/8/EC. It is therefore appropriate to include diflubenzuron for use in product-type 18 in Annex I to that Directive.  Not all potential uses and exposure scenarios have been evaluated at Union level.  In the light of the findings in the assessment report that there is a possible indirect human exposure via consumption of food as a result of those uses represented in the assessment, it is appropriate to require, where relevant, verification of the need to set new or to amend existing maximum residue levels.

**Control plan - prevalence of fraudulent practices in the marketing of certain foods
The European Commission have recommended that Member States carry out a coordinated control plan with a view to establish the prevalence of fraudulent practices in the marketing of certain foods for a period of one month. This period may be extended by an additional period of two months.  Commission Recommendation of 19 February 2013 on a coordinated control plan with a view to establish the prevalence of fraudulent practices in the marketing of certain foods and Commission Implementing Decision of 19 February 2013 as regards a Union financial aid towards a coordinated control plan with a view to establish the prevalence of fraudulent practices in the marketing of certain foods.

**FSA - Update on EU sampling programme
The Food Standards Agency has published further details of the European Union sampling programme that was agreed by member states and announced by the FSA. The European Commission has asked member states to put Official Control Plans in place that allow sampling and testing for presence of horse DNA in foods marketed or labelled as containing beef. In the UK, 150 samples of beef products are being taken for the survey, and the results of the analysis will be reported to the EU along with details of any follow-up action taken.

**Scientific opinions

Review of the existing MRLs for isoxaflutole

Review of the existing MRLs for acibenzolar-S-methyl

Review of the existing MRLs for warfarin

Revision of the Norwegian annual monitoring programme for BSE

Safety and efficacy of Hostazym X (endo-1,4-beta-xylanase) as a feed additive for poultry, piglets and pigs for fattening

Flavouring Group Evaluation 224 (FGE.224): Consideration of genotoxic potential for two α,β-unsaturated thiophenes from subgroup 5.2 of FGE.19 by EFSA

Scientific Opinion on Flavouring Group Evaluation 06, Revision 4 (FGE.06Rev4): Straight- and branched-chain aliphatic unsaturated primary alcohols, aldehydes, carboxylic acids and esters from chemical groups 1, 3 and 4

Scientific Opinion on the safety and efficacy of iodine compounds (E2) as feed additives for all animal species: calcium iodate anhydrous and potassium iodide, based on a dossier submitted by Ajay Europe SARL

Patent Blue V (E 131) for all animal species

Re-evaluation of Patent Blue V (E 131) as a food additive

Modification of the existing MRLs for dimethomorph in seeds of spices and caraway

Reasoned opinion on the modification of the existing MRLs for dimethomorph in seeds of spices and caraway

Reasoned opinion on the modification of the existing MRLs for bixafen in rape seed, linseed, poppy seed and mustard seed

Report of the FOCUS groundwater working group (FOCUS, 2009): assessment of lower tiers

Safety and efficacy of fumaric acid as a feed additive for all animal species

Safety and efficacy of copper compounds (E4) as feed additives for all species: cupric chelate of amino acids hydrate, based on a dossier submitted by Zinpro Animal Nutrition Inc.

Modification of the existing MRLs for lambda-cyhalothrin in azarole and persimmon

PET Recycling process Holfeld Diamat

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