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European Union

There is No Mistaking Butter Says Irish Food Safety Authority


Butter is now defined in Ireland as a churned-cream dairy product consisting primarily of milk fat, water, non-fat milk material and if necessary, salt, according to Dr. Pat O’Mahon, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland’s chief specialist in food technology. The new official definition comes from a recently published guidance note on “The Use of… Continue Reading

EFSA: Campylobacter and Listeria Cases Rise Again in the European Union


Human cases of listeriosis and campylobacteriosis rose again in 2014 in Europe, continuing an upward trend that began in 2008, reports the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). It stated that salmonellosis cases increased slightly for the first time since 2008. These are the main findings of the latest annual report by EFSA and the European… Continue Reading

EU has a ‘Tolerated’ Trade in Insects as a Protein Source

Plates of cooked insects

Earlier this year, Belgium’s Federal Agency for Safety of the Food Chain stated that insects for human consumption “appear to offer great potential” as an alternative protein source. The agency’s Scientific Committee went so far as to acknowledge that breeding and marketing insects is already being tolerated in some parts of the European Union without any… Continue Reading

European Union Expands COOL Requirements Beyond Beef


Almost a decade after the first country-of-origin labeling (COOL) of beef was required in Europe, no packaged unprocessed meat product may now be legally sold in any European Union member country without a label stating where the animal was reared and slaughtered. Europe’s new law, effective April 1, covers fresh, chilled and frozen meat from sheep, goats,… Continue Reading

EU Illness Report: Campylobacter Leveled Off, Listeria Increased


The number of Campylobacter cases has leveled off in Europe, while Listeriosis is still on the rise, according to a report by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). The European Union Summary Report on Trends and Sources of Zoonoses, Zoonotic Agents and Food-borne Outbreaks in… Continue Reading

Belgium Takes a Serious Look at the Food Safety of Insects


Neither Belgium nor the European Union has any specific regulations regarding breeding and marketing insects for human consumption, but the trade is tolerated. And why not? Insects, according to the Scientific Committee of the (Belgium) Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain, “offer great potential” as alternative sources of dietary protein. But what… Continue Reading

China Joins List of Countries Restricting U.S. Poultry Imports Due to Avian Flu


On Tuesday, China joined a growing list of countries barring U.S. poultry imports after avian influenza was found in backyard chicken and guinea fowl flocks in Oregon and Washington. More than 30 countries have banned or restricted the import of poultry originating in one or both of those states. China and the 28 members of… Continue Reading

Confusion Greets New EU Food-Labeling Rules


New rules went into effect Dec. 13 throughout the European Union to help people avoid 14 allergens in food by requiring labels, providing information on food allergies and intolerance, and offering voluntary best practices on cross-contamination controls for pre-packed and loose food items. The new rules impact restaurants, bakeries, delis and grocery stores, among others…. Continue Reading

Analysis: 30 Percent of NZ Baby Food Contained Pesticide Residues


According to a recent analysis of a government study, New Zealand baby food contained nearly 800 times more pesticides than baby food in Europe. The analysis results and the perceived risks to New Zealand babies were presented Thursday to the parliament in Wellington by Dr. Meriel Watts of the Pesticide Action Network Aotearoa and Alison… Continue Reading

Europe’s Three Hepatitis A Outbreaks in 2013: What Can We Learn?


In the first half of 2013, Europe dealt with three simultaneous outbreaks from the hepatitis A virus. Knowing that at least two of those outbreaks were connected to frozen berries, Europe’s Centre for Disease Prevention and Control set out to describe what could be learned from those outbreaks in an article published in Eurosurveillance. Those… Continue Reading