FSA News Item, 8 January 2010
The Scottish Food Enforcement Liaison Committee's Research Working Group has today published an annual report of the food sampling data collected by Scottish local authorities (LAs) and their partner laboratories during 2008.
In 2008, the Agency’s database, the UK Food Surveillance System (UKFSS) recorded microbiological and chemical data for more than 13,000 samples in Scotland, covering a wide range of food categories and analyses. As was the case in 2007, the report of the 2008 data indicate that the majority of samples tested were found to comply with food safety and standards legislation.
Recommendations are made for areas to address in future LA sampling programmes, and a number of issues are highlighted in relation to food standards that merit particular attention by the enforcement community in Scotland. In addition, the report highlighted a 10% decrease in food sampling in Scotland between 2007 and 2008 and emphasised the importance of surveillance measures currently in place in protecting public health and consumer interests in relation to food.
The UKFSS continues to be a useful tool in the monitoring of trends in national food sampling activities, and the data collected is now being used by LAs in Scotland to assist in the co-ordination of risk based sampling programmes.
At present, 29 out of 32 LAs in Scotland submit their food sampling data to the UKFSS, and training on the use of the UKFSS for all LAs in Scotland was completed in November 2009.
The database has been routinely employed by 100% of local authorities in Northern Ireland since 2006, and the roll-out of UKFSS to more than 400 local authorities in England and Wales is due to be completed by the end of 2010.
A copy of the report is available on this site. See: Scottish Local Authority Food Sampling (2008) Report