Food Law News - UK - 2001

FSA Letter, 31 July 2001

CONTAMINANTS - Maximum Levels for Aflatoxins in Spices - Commission Regulation and Directive

The European Commission's proposed Regulation on maximum levels for aflatoxins in spices and the associated Directive on methods for sampling, sample preparation and analysis criteria have now been finalised and will become a mandatory requirement for all Member States. The Regulation is due to apply from 1 September 2001 and the Directive must be implemented by 31 December 2001. The FSA is writing now to seek views on the proposals for implementing this legislation in England. In order to implement the legislation to meet the coming into force date the consultation time has, unavoidably, been limited to 8 weeks. Copies of the Regulation and Directive were provided with the letter. The English Statutory Instrument is expected to come into force in October 2001 provided publication of the Regulation and Directive in the Official Journal of the EC has occurred sufficiently far ahead of that month, failing which some delay in making the English Regulations is possible. Comments must be sent to the FSA by 26 September 2001 at the latest.

The letter also attaches a draft Regulatory Impact Assessment giving the options for implementation together with a draft Statutory Instrument, which is required to make the amendments to Commission Regulation (EC) No 194/97 of 31 January 1997 effective under English law and to implement the associated Directive. The options are limited to the timing of implementation of the Directive and, it is noted that for the reasons stated in the Regulatory Impact Assessment, it is recommended that the Directive is implemented at the same time as the Regulation.

These Regulations contain detailed procedures to be followed by enforcement authorities.

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