Dr David Jukes, The University of Reading, UK

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Food Law News - UK - 2014

FSA Consultation, 12 November 2014

ENFORCEMENT - The Food Law Code of Practice (England) Review

This consultation seeks comments on its proposals to amend the Food Law Code of Practice. Responses are requested by: Wednesday, 4 February 2015


Who will this consultation be of most interest to?

 Local Authorities and Food Businesses

What is the subject of this consultation?

 Direction and guidance on the approach that local authority food law regulatory services should take is given in a statutory Code of Practice (Code). The Code sets out instructions and criteria to which food authorities must have regard. The Code requires periodic revision to ensure that it reflects the current enforcement practices and supports local authority delivery of their official control obligations. It aims to ensure that enforcement is effective, consistent, risk-based and proportionate.

What is the purpose of this consultation?

 The FSA is inviting comments on its proposals to amend the Food Law Code of Practice. The proposed amendments will:

  1. Revise and clarify arrangements for food establishment registration and inspections of mobile food establishments, ships and aircrafts to remove unnecessary regulatory activity.
  2. Revise competency and qualification requirements for local authority officers engaged in official controls and other regulatory activities to better target enforcement resources and ensure greater consistency.

Consultation details

In the UK, local authorities (LAs) are responsible for the verification of compliance with food law in food establishments. Direction and guidance on the approach that LAs should take is provided in the statutory Food Law Code of Practice (Code). This Code sets out instructions and criteria which LAs must have regard to when discharging their official control duties in relation to food law. The Code requires periodic revisions to ensure that it reflects current food law policies and practices so that official controls and enforcement action taken by officers remain effective, consistent and proportionate.

The review process is being undertaken in a staged approach and this is the third in a series of four revisions. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has identified a number of improvements required that can be undertaken now and will underpin future, more significant revisions. The review process, therefore, is a long term project with further changes planned in 2015 - 2016. This impact assessment only covers two of those areas, which the FSA has considered to be crucial to implement now which will improve operational efficacy in relation to the allocation of resources in the delivery of official controls.

A copy of the full consultation document is available on this site. See: Consultation pack: The Food Law Code of Practice (England) Review

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