Food Regulation in Australia and New Zealand

This website provides information about the activities and processes in the joint Australia and New Zealand food regulation system, including roles and responsibilities of the relevant food standards setting and regulatory authorities. The current activities of the food regulation system are divided into the three key priorities: Reducing foodborne illness, particularly related to campylobacter and salmonella; supporting the public health objectives to reduce chronic disease related to overweight and obesity; &, maintaining a strong, robust and agile food regulation system.    Source: ANZ food priorities

Country of Origin Food Labelling Update

If you sell food in retail stores in Australia, new Country of Origin Labelling (CoOL) laws have applied to your products from 1 July 2016. The reforms become mandatory on 1 July 2018 following a two-year transition period. This means food products packaged from 1 July 2018 must display the new labels.    Source: CoOL foods

Australia & NZ Updates on Sugar Regulation

In April 2017 Australia and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation (Forum) agreed to a Stage 1 work program on sugar. The Forum agreed that information about sugar provided on food labels does not provide adequate contextual information to enable consumers to make informed choices in support of dietary guidelines. The Forum also noted the range of existing complementary initiatives outside of the food regulation system that address sugar intakes, such as the five year review of the Health Star Rating system, policy work underway on the labelling of fats and oils, and the work of the Healthy Food Partnership. The Forum intends to take a whole-of-diet, holistic approach to food labelling.    Source: Oh, sugar sugar

Australia & NZ Updates on Alcohol With Pregnancy Warnings on Labels

Pregnancy warning labels were a recommendation from Labelling Logic: Review of Food Labelling Law and Policy (2011) (Labelling Logic). Recommendation 25 of that report was: That a suitably worded warning message about the risks of consuming alcohol while pregnant be mandated on individual containers of alcoholic beverages and at the point of sale for unpackaged alcoholic beverages, as support for ongoing broader community education. In response to this recommendation, the alcohol industry was provided with a two-year period, commencing December 2011, to adopt the voluntary initiative to place pregnancy health warning labels on alcohol products. The findings of the voluntary labelling initiative to place pregnancy health warnings on alcohol products was presented to the Australia and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation (the Forum) at its meeting on 24 November 2017.    Source: Alcohol warning

NZ MPI Reminds Food Businesses to be Vigilant About Gluten-Free Claims

New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries is reminding food businesses which make claims that their food is gluten-free to ensure their suppliers provide evidence of any claims they are making about the presence of allergens. The reminder follows MPI's recall of buckwheat flour supplied by Davis Food Ingredients this week. The affected buckwheat flour has been found to contain gluten and has been used as an ingredient in products advertised as gluten-free or products consumers consider to be gluten-free. To protect people who are gluten intolerant or have coeliac disease, these products have been or are being removed from shelves.    Source: Gluten free NZ

Box Village Bakery Fined for Food Safety Breaches

The owners of a Sylvania bakery at the centre of a Salmonella outbreak that affected more than 200 people in January 2016 have been fined a total of $122,000 and ordered to pay $7,199 professional costs after each was convicted of ten breaches of the Food Act 2003. The owners of the Box Village Bakery, Thi Thu Ngo and Hung Son Le each pleaded guilty to five breaches of selling unsafe food, and five breaches of failing to meet food safety standards and were fined $61,000 each.    Source: Bakers bugs

NSW Food Authority Recalls—

'Berg Smallgoods' American Style Skinless Hot Dogs: Aldi Stores has recalled ‘Berg Smallgoods’ American Style Skinless Hot Dogs due to potential microbial contamination and presence of foreign matter (bone fragments).    Source: Hot dogs

Warburn Estate Bottled Wine: Warburn Estate has recalled assorted wine due to a packaging fault resulting in the presence of glass.    Source: Wine glass

FSANZ Notifications—

Proposal M1014 – Maximum Residue Limits (2016): The purpose of the Proposal is to consider varying certain maximum residue limits for residues of agricultural and veterinary chemicals that may occur in food.    Source: Residue maximums

Application A1139 – Food derived from Potato Lines: The purpose of the Application is to seek approval for food derived from genetically modified potato lines F10, J3, W8, X17 and Y9, which haslate blight protection, low acrylamide potential, reduced browning (black spot) and lower reducing sugars.    Source: GM potatoes

Application A1140 – Food derived from Herbicide-tolerant Canola: ​​The purpose of the Application is to seek approval for food derived from herbicide-tolerant, male-sterile canola line MS11, genetically modified to provide tolerance to the herbicide glufosinate-ammonium.    Source: GM canola

Editor’s note:  A complete list of current proposals prepared by FSANZ to considering changes to the Food Standards Code can be found here Current proposals

RFA Breaking News

March 2018 Newsletter

  Complementary Medicines (“Dietary supplements”): Therapeutic Goods Amendment (2017 Measures No.1) Bill 2017 Summary of Changes As reported in February 2018 Newsletter, The Therapeutic Goods Amendment (2017 Measures No. 1)…

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Complementary Medicines (“Dietary supplements”):

Therapeutic Goods Amendment (2017 Measures No.1) Bill 2017 Summary of Changes As reported in February 2018 Newsletter, The Therapeutic Goods Amendment (2017 Measures No. 1) Bill 2017 was passed by…

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Foods:

Department of Agriculture and Water Resources Amends Food Surveillance Protocols This Australian authority has completed a review of the surveillance tests applied to many imported food products. Fresh and frozen…

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Cosmetics (& Household cleaning products):

NICNAS Invites Feedback on General Rules, Categorisation Guidelines and Transitional Rules In Australia, all cosmetics and personal care products are regulated by The National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme.…

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Marketing News:

ACCC Publication: “Advertising and Selling—A Guide for Business” The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission has released this very helpful and comprehensive document outlining all of the important consumer related issues…

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This issue of RFA Newsletter is sponsored by:

IME     a trusted insurance broker for small to medium businesses, with expertise in risk management, professional indemnity, public & product liability, and property cover. See more details at bottom…

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