FSA News Item, 22 November 2006
The Food Standards Agency is currently reviewing how official controls are delivered in approved meat premises in the UK . A programme of work has been approved to look into a range of options in light of EU food hygiene regulations that came into force in January 2006.
The FSA will remain the competent authority responsible for official controls in meat plants in the UK and we will work with stakeholders to ensure the most effective and efficient methods of inspection are employed.
Food safety and consumer confidence are of paramount importance and any revised method of delivering controls must maintain current standards. This is the starting point of the review.
It will also be important to explore options that build on current experience and expertise, as well as being proportionate, targeted, transparent, consistent and risk-based. Options should also seek to support the long-term sustainability of the UK meat industry.
The FSA is currently at an early stage in thinking through these issues and planning the work programme.
However, as this work has a high priority, the FSA hopes to complete the review and recommend a way forward by summer 2007.
We are keen to work closely with all stakeholders and would be pleased to receive ideas and input to the options review.
In April 2006, the Meat Hygiene Service, in conjunction with the FSA, consulted on proposed changes to veterinary supervision arrangements in the MHS.
The FSA has also consulted on revised charging arrangements for meat hygiene controls and has received proposals from the meat industry for an alternative approach to the delivery of meat hygiene controls.
The responses to the two consultations and the industry proposals are being taken into account in the review.
Contact the FSA
Geoff Tierney, the review's programme manager, can be contacted by email on email@example.com or by telephone on 020 7276 8899.