FSA Consultation Letter, 9 December 2011
A copy of the consultation document is available on this site. See: Proposed Amendment to the Food Hygiene Regulations
The Food Standards Agency is seeking views on current draft of the Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012 which is due to come into force in April 2012, noting in particular the 'ambulatory reference' and the health mark for meat from animals subject to 'emergency slaughter'. Responses are requested by: 2 March 2012
Who will this consultation be of most interest to?
Border inspection posts, businesses importing food, the farmed game industry and veterinarians working with the farmed game industry.
What is the subject of this consultation?
i) Draft of the Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012 which:
- give effect to recent EU food hygiene legislation
- provide for an 'ambulatory reference' that will automatically give effect to certain changes to the technical annexes of EU food regulations in future
- provide a special health mark to be applied to emergency slaughtered animals or their carcases
ii) Impact assessments on recent EU regulations and a proposed EU regulation.
What is the purpose of this consultation?
i) to let stakeholders comment on the current draft of the Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012, due to come into force in April 2012, noting in particular the 'ambulatory reference' and the health mark for meat from animals subject to 'emergency slaughter'
ii) to ask stakeholders for comments on the FSA's assessment of the impact of two areas of change to EU food hygiene legislation, relating to the import of composite products and the certification of farmed game as set out in two impact assessments
ii) to ask stakeholders to indicate whether an impact assessment should be undertaken on any of the other changes to food hygiene legislation that are covered by this consultation
iv) to otherwise raise awareness among stakeholders about new and proposed EU legislation
The principal EU regulations covering food hygiene [see Endnote 1 below] are amended on a regular basis by other EU regulations. While EU food hygiene regulations apply directly in the UK, it is necessary for each country of the UK to make national law in the form of a Statutory Instrument (SI) to enable full application of the EU regulations (e.g. to provide for the enforcement of new requirements of the EU regulations).
The SI that is the subject of this consultation (The Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012) is required to:
Similar consultations are being undertaken in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Stakeholders should note that this proposed SI has already been consulted on in an earlier form between 31 March 2010 and 23 June 2010 as the Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) (No 2) Regulations 2010. The ambulatory provisions and the special health mark provisions were included in that draft SI. The consultation documents and stakeholders' responses can be seen on the FSA's website [see Endnote 3 below]. No objections were raised by stakeholders to the introduction of the ambulatory reference.
Since the March 2010 consultation closed, some amendments have been added to the SI; the ambulatory reference provision has been amended and as more recent EU regulations have been adopted, where appropriate they have been added to the draft SI's Schedule 1 in order that the schedule gives effect to the most recent EU regulations (these are set out at Annexe F).
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is obliged to consult interested parties on all changes to food law, both EU and national, and where there is any likelihood that the impacts of changes to laws may be significant, the FSA will make an impact assessment (IA), formally setting out its considered views on the costs and/or benefits of these changes. Impact assessments (IAs) are normally started at the early stage of the life of a proposed EU regulation and updated accordingly.
Two draft IAs are included in this consultation on which the FSA asks stakeholders to comment on its considered views on the costs and/or benefits of the following:
Regulation (EC) 1162/2009 and Regulation (EU) 150/2011 have both been cited in Schedule 1 of the draft Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012.
Throughout the IAs, questions for stakeholders to consider and respond to or comments drawing stakeholders' attentions to particular pieces of information are underlined.
Broadly the consultation falls into four main parts, which are:
The FSA asks whether stakeholders have any views on the current draft of the Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012, in particular noting the introduction of the ambulatory reference and the special health mark for meat from emergency slaughtered animals.
The FSA also asks for stakeholders' views on the two IAs on composite product imports and on the certification of farmed game, as well as asking stakeholders to consider if the FSA should produce IAs on other EU regulations covered or referred to by this consultation.
Responses are required by close 2 March 2012.
1 Regulation (EC) No 852/2004 of 29 April 2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs; Regulation (EC) No 853/2004 of 29 April 2004 laying down specific hygiene rules for food of animal origin and Regulation (EC) No 854/2004 of 29 April 2004 laying down specific rules for the organisation of official controls on products of animal origin intended for human consumption. There is also Regulation (EC) 2073/2005 of 15 November 2005 on microbiological criteria for foodstuffs.
2 The Food Hygiene (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2010 (SI 2010/534).
3 See link: http://www.food.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/consultation/consummfoodhygienereg2012eng.pdf