MEPs vote for independent, unannounced inspections

The European Parliament has voted for a tougher official controls regime to apply EU wide with unannounced inspections, by independent public bodies.

Food Safety & Standards, Traceability, Horsemeat Scandal

Ombudsman tells Commission to release Dalli documents

The European Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, has asked the Commission to publish letters and internal notes concerning the October 2012 resignation of former EU Health Commissioner John Dalli in a cash-for-access lobbying scandal.

Institutional

EU challenges Russian pork ban at WTO

The EU has mounted a challenge in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against the Russian ban on imports of pigs, fresh pork and certain pig products from the EU.

Food Safety & Standards, Trade

Lower salt intake “may have caused heart disease rate to plummet

The 15% fall in average salt intake between 2003-11 in England may be responsible for the 40% drop in heart disease and stroke over the same period, new research suggests.

Research, UK

Meat can be safely transported above 7°C, says EFSA

Meat can be transported at temperatures higher than the current maximum of 7°C without causing additional bacterial growth, provided that specific maximum transport times are applied and bacterial growth is controlled by efficient chilling, according to the European Food Safety Authority.

Food Safety & Standards, Guidelines

Glucasamine salt and coriander seed cleared as novel foods

Glucasamine salt and coriander seed oil are the latest ingredients to be authorised as novel foods after the Commission adopted decisions granting their approval last month.

Federal bill introduced to derail mandatory labelling of GM foods

Federal legislation to block state efforts to require labelling of genetically modified foods was introduced on April 9 by a bipartisan group of House members, Food Chemical News reports.

Labelling, GM

European Parliament votes not to label GM pollen

Any genetically modified pollen content in honey will not have to be labelled in the EU in future after a key vote in the European Parliament this week.

Labelling, GM

Academic hits out at under-appreciation of technology

A leading US academic has hit out at what he called “fear marketing” on new technologies based on “shaky science and poor economics.”

Food Technology, Internationalisation

French farmers to appeal MON810 ban

French maize growers and seed companies are to appeal to the French council of state, the Conseil d’État, against the re-imposition of a French ban on the cultivation of Monsanto’s genetically modified insect-resistant MON810 maize.

Food Technology, Genetic Modification, Environment, France

More restrictions on “junk” food loom in Mexican schools

Stubbornly high overweight and obesity rates at all age levels give ammunition to Mexican proponents of regulations aimed at reducing children’s exposure to foods and beverages high in calories and low in nutritional value.

Health, Health Promotion

Url says EFSA risk assessments will have to be enlarged

The risk assessment paradigm that the European Food Safety Authority uses will have to be enlarged in future to cover new challenges thrown up in areas such as endocrine disrupting chemicals, the agency’s Executive Director designate told MEPs this week.

Food Safety & Standards

Foods are not medicines, says UK MEP about EFSA claims assessments

British Liberal MEP Chris Davies has lashed out at the way the European Food Safety Authority assesses health claims based on tough levels of scientific substantiation, telling Executive Director designate Bernhard Url that “foods are not pharmaceuticals.”

Health Claims, Policy

Reference to diabetes in supplements advert sparks complaints

Supplement maker Vitabiotics has come under fire following complaints that advertisements for its product Diabetone implied the product could treat or cure diabetes.

Health Claims, Advertising, UK

Advertising restrictions loom for obesity linked foods in Mexico

Discord over proposed restrictions on Mexico’s public media advertising for obesity-linked foods and beverages casts doubt over the extent of controls on ads and labelling.

Advertising, Americas

FSAI consults on food marketing code of practice

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has given a 14 May deadline for comments on a draft code of conduct for the use of four terms in food marketing, namely ‘Artisan/Artisanal’, ‘Farmhouse’, ‘Traditional’ and ‘Natural.’

Advertising, Restrictions & Rules

Url backs greater EFSA cooperation with other agencies

The Executive Director designate of the European Food Safety Authority, Bernhard Url has called for greater cooperation between EFSA and other agencies in both the EU Member States and internationally.

Harmonisation, Internationalisation, Policy

Ombudsman backs MEPs on beefed up lobby register

The EU Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, has backed European Parliament calls for a strengthened transparency register for lobbyists.

Policy, Institutional