Not Meeting Honey Rules Costs Auckland Businessman

An Auckland businessman has been fined more than NZ$26,000 for offences related to making false therapeutic claims about honey and failing to ensure he was a registered exporter. Jonathan Paul Towers, 43, has been sentenced in the Auckland District Court and fined $26,300 after earlier pleading guilty to one charge under the Food Act and one charge under the Animal Products Act. A Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) investigation found that Towers exported honey worth approximately $30,000 while not being registered between March 2014 and November 2016.   Source: NZ honey fine

Honey Investigation Concludes Due to Testing Uncertainty

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission has concluded its investigation into allegations Capilano Honey Limited (Capilano) breached the Australian Consumer Law in relation to representations about its ‘Allowrie’ honey and other products. The investigation followed allegations in the media that a number of honey products including Capilano’s ‘Allowrie’ honey, labelled ‘pure’ and ‘100% honey’ were adulterated with sugar syrup. The allegations were based on results arising from a testing process known as Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) testing. NMR testing can be used for a variety of applications, but has only recently emerged as a testing method for honey adulteration. The ACCC is advised NMR testing is not yet reliable enough to determine whether honey is adulterated and therefore should not be used as a basis to support legal action. This is consistent with the approach of regulators in the UK, US and the EU.   Source: Honey is now OK ; See also Nutra Ingredients-Asia, Honey investigation loses sting

Food Regulation: Getting Your Claims Right

The Australian and New Zealand joint food regulation system is based on scientific evidence and expertise that protects the health and safety of consumers. It is a complex system that involves all levels of the Australian and New Zealand governments. Different roles are met by local, state and national government, and international obligations are respected. Here is a guide to complying with the Nutrition, Health and Related Claims Standard of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (the Code). This guide was developed by the Implementation Subcommittee for Food Regulation (ISFR) to provide advice on how to comply with the Nutrition, Health and Related Claims Standard (Standard 1.2.7) in the Code.   Source: Food regulations guide

FSANZ Notifications—

Application A1129 – Monk Fruit Extract as a Food Additive: The purpose of the Application is to permit monk fruit extract as a food additive, specifically as an intense sweetener.   Source:  Monk fruit

Application A1156 – Food derived from Super High Oleic Safflower Lines 26 and 40: The purpose of this Application is to seek approval for food derived from SHO safflower lines 26 and 40, genetically modified to produce high levels of oleic acid in the seed.   Source: GM safflower

Application A1157 – Enzymatic production of Rebaudioside M: The purpose of this Application is to seek approval for a new specification for rebaudioside M produced by an enzymatic biosynthesis method.   Source: Rebaudioside M

Application A1158 – Rosemary extract as a food additive: The purpose of this Application is to seek approval to permit the use of rosemary extract as a food additive (antioxidant).   Source: Rosemary antioxidant

Application A1162–Triacylglycerol lipase preparation from Trichoderma reesei as a Processing Aid (Enzyme): The purpose of this Application is to seek approval to permit the use of the enzyme Triacylglycerol lipase from Trichoderma reesei as a processing aid in the manufacturing of cereal-based products.   Source: Trichoderma enzyme 1

Application A1165 – Lysophospholipase from Trichoderma reesei as a Processing Aid (Enzyme): ​The purpose of the Application is to permit the use of lysophospholipase enzyme from Trichoderma reesei as a processing aid for use in starch processing.   Source: Trichoderma enzyme 2

Application A1172 – Enzymatic production of Rebaudioside D: The purpose of this Application is to seek approval for a new specification for rebaudioside D produced by an enzymatic conversion method.   Source: Rebuadioside

Application A1173 – Minimum protein in follow-on formula: The purpose of the Application is to seek approval to vary the minimum protein requirement in follow-on formula.    Source: Infant formula

Proposal P1050 – Pregnancy warning labels on alcoholic beverages: The purpose of the proposal is to consider a mandatory labelling standard for pregnancy warning labels on packaged alcoholic beverages.   Source: Alcohol in prgnancy

Hemp Seed Can be Sold as Food in New Zealand

Amendments to regulations to allow the sale of hemp seeds as food came into affect on 12th November 2018. Head of New Zealand Food Safety, Bryan Wilson, says there was wide support for changes to introduce hemp seed into the New Zealand food supply. "Hemp seeds are safe to eat and nutritious. They don't produce a psychoactive or therapeutic effect. "Earlier this year, New Zealand Food Safety and the Ministry of Health jointly consulted on proposed changes to the Misuse of Drugs (Industrial Hemp) Regulations 2006 and the Food Regulations 2015 to allow the sale of hemp seed as food. Sixty-four submissions were received from industry groups, growers, businesses, and consumers, with the majority of respondents strongly in favour of changes to allow hemp seed and hemp seed products to be sold as food. Submitters also requested more guidance surrounding the Misuse of Drugs (Industrial Hemp) Regulations 2006.     Source: NZ hemp seeds

[Related content: Cannabis Cosmetics Crusader Celebrates Year on From Aussie Hemp Food Legalisation - Almost exactly a year ago, changes to the Australian Food Standards Code finally permitted the sale of low-psychoactive hemp seed as a food, after years of lobbying by producers and industry groups. Hemp skincare’s popularity has trickled down from last November’s food legalisation buzz.   Source: J. Whitehead, Cosmetic Designs-Asia Oz hemp regulation ]

History Spot: Dr Harvey Washington Wiley & his ‘Poison Squad' who Pioneered USA Food Safety

In major US cities in the late 19th century, dairy producers looking to cut costs would dilute milk using pond water, plaster dust and some yellow lead to give a golden hue. Once the manufacturer was satisfied with the aesthetic of the product, the toxic chemical formaldehyde could be added to give the so-called "embalmed milk" a longer shelf life. Milk was only one of a long list of commonly adulterated foods that included lead in cheese, brick dust in cinnamon, sawdust in ground coffee, and brown sugar spiked with crushed insects. Unchecked by government regulation, basic safety or even labelling requirements, food manufacturers put profit before the health of their customers. After briefly serving in the Civil War, Harvey Washington Wiley became a chemistry professor, and in 1883 was named the Department of Agriculture's chief chemist. The department, traditionally concerned with agribusiness, became the vehicle for Wiley’s 30-year campaign for safe food and proper labelling. Eventually, the government legislated and the Meat Inspection Act was passed, followed a week later by the Pure Food and Drug Act. Commonly known as 'the Wiley Act', it required that a drug's active ingredients be written on its packaging, and meant unsafe products could be outlawed. Gradually food safety standards were expanded and exported internationally and by mid-century became the rule rather than the exception throughout the developed world. Consumers today, who value their breakfast free of borax, have Wiley to thank.   Source: ABC News History: The Wiley Act

October 2018 Failing Food Report

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources targets and monitors food determined to pose a high or medium risk to public health. Risk food is targeted at the rate of 100 per cent until a history of food safety compliance is established. When an emerging human health and safety hazard is identified in food, the department may temporarily increase monitoring and testing. This latest report details food that was found to fail under the Imported Food Inspection Scheme during the month of August. Among the pathogenic organisms detected in these imported foods were, Listeria monocytogenes, Vibrio cholera, & Salmonella, as well as the toxins Aflatoxin, Lead, Dimethoate and more.   Source: Latest failed foods

RFA Breaking News

Complementary Medicines (“Dietary supplements”):

    Summary of Changes to the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code 2018 The Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code (No.2) 2018 (the No.2 Code 2018) will commence from 1 January 2019. Key…

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Foods:

  Not Meeting Honey Rules Costs Auckland Businessman An Auckland businessman has been fined more than NZ$26,000 for offences related to making false therapeutic claims about honey and failing to…

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Cosmetics and TGA listed sunscreens:

  Why You Should Always Buy Australian Made Sunscreen Sunscreen experts are pleading with Australian consumers to steer clear of so-called "sunscreen pills" and buy Australian-made products over imported ones.…

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Marketing News:

  A Product Registry in USA Would Go a Long Way Toward Weeding Out Bad Actors The low barriers to entry in the dietary supplement industry create the risk that…

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Complementary Medicines (“Dietary supplements”):

  TGA Revamps Complaints Handling for the Advertising of Therapeutic Goods The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is responsible for ensuring that therapeutic goods available for supply and use in Australia…

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Foods:

  Honey Scandal Rolls on: Almost 20 per cent of Australian Honey Samples Found to Not be Pure As reported by this newsletter in September 2018, Australia’s honey is not…

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