FSA Local Authority Letter (ENF/E/08/066), 10 October 2008
A copy of the draft Framwork Agreement is available on this site. See: Draft Framework Agreement
The Agency is seeking your views on the draft updating of the Framework Agreement on local authority food law enforcement. May I ask that responses are sent to me by close on Friday 9 January 2009.
Views and comments are being sought from all local authorities, including port health authorities, in the United Kingdom, and from the members of the Enforcement Liaison Group (ELG). Our intention is that after consideration of the comments received, the draft updating will go to the Framework Agreement sub-group of the ELG for final approval. The planned implementation date for the updated version is 1 April 2009.
The Agency adopted its New Vision for the enforcement of official controls on food at the meeting of the FSA Board on 12 October 2006 – see Board paper PRO 06/10/02 [see Note 1 below]. The new version aims to introduce greater flexibility for authorities to deliver a risk-based service, allowing resources to be focussed where they are most needed. This objective has been pursued through the Changes to Local Authority Enforcement (CLAE) project, which has comprised:
The changes to monitoring and audit also apply to official controls on animal feed.
The final part of CLAE is a revision of the Framework Agreement, to incorporate the changes from the first three reviews. It is on this that we now seek your views. The Framework Agreement sets out the planning and delivery requirements of feed and food official controls, based on the existing statutory Codes of Practice, and sets out how the Agency will monitor and audit these services.
This is not a full review of the Framework Agreement, and no major changes are proposed. It will form the fifth updating of the original Agreement, and will adapt it to the changes under CLAE. The key changes in each of the areas of enforcement policy, monitoring and audit have already been the subject of full consultations, including impact assessments for the enforcement policy and monitoring changes.
An impact assessment (IA) has not been included with this letter. There are no costs to businesses, and the total incremental cost to local authorities and the FSA of the proposed new Framework Agreement is below £5million. However if evidence resulting from this letter shows that there will be costs to business or its incremental costs to the public sector will be over £5 million an IA will be produced and published.
The main changes and features of the new draft Framework Agreement are that it:
Please comment on any aspect which is of interest to you. However, we would particularly welcome comments on:
Do you agree that no new significant burdens will be created for business or LAs? If not, would you please provide details of what you consider these might be?
2. published: in England (http://www.food.gov.uk/enforcement/foodlaw/foodlawcop/copengland); in Northern Ireland (add weblink); and in Wales (http://www.food.gov.uk/enforcement/foodlaw/foodlawcop/copwales). In Scotland, subject to further consultation, publication is planned for early 2009.