Dr David Jukes, The University of Reading, UK

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Food Law News - UK - 2017

FSA Enforcement Letter, 6 March 2017

ENFORCEMENT - Publishing UK Food Surveillance System (UKFSS) Data

Note: The UK Food Surveillance System (UKFSS) is a national database for central storage of analytical results from feed and food samples taken by enforcement authorities (local authorities and port health authorities) as part of their official controls

The following is the main part of the letter.  The full letter is available on this site.  See: Publishing UKFSS Data

I am writing to outline our proposals to publish UKFSS data as open data from 31st March 2017, and to request LAs views as part of a review of UKFSS. For information, we will also be sending a similar letter to all laboratories using UKFSS.

Publishing Data

The FSA have a strategic objective around becoming a data driven organisation, this 'open by default' policy includes publishing 95% of our datasets as open data by the end of March 2017. Open data is data that anyone can access, use or share.

The Agency holds a considerable amount of food and feed sampling data on UKFSS, entered onto the system by enforcement authorities and official control laboratories, which we intend to publish as part of the 'open by default' policy. This means that all LAs will have the benefit of accessing and analysing this data when considering their own sampling programmes.

The Agency has previously published summary reports on the data from UKFSS, with the last report published for 2012-13 sampling data. To avoid duplication, we will only be publishing data from April 2013 as part of this process. The raw data from UKFSS will be published as an excel spreadsheet, and we are currently working with our UKFSS provider, McLaren West, to prepare this data. We hope to publish all data from April 2013 by the end of March 2017, but it may be that we take a staged approach over a few weeks. Once all the data has been published, we intend to update the dataset on a quarterly basis.

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