ABERDEEN, SCOTLAND — Attendees at a major conference have been urged to “wave the food safety flag” to keep the topic on the table during discussions around moving to more sustainable food systems.

Wayne Anderson, director of Science and Standards at the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI), said it was crucial that food safety practitioners are adding context to policy and are on action groups.

Speaking at the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) European Symposium in Aberdeen, Anderson covered a number of topics such as the EU Green Deal, Farm to Fork strategy and Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reforms as

Continue Reading Food safety needs attention in sustainability push

President Joe Biden is looking in another direction to steer agriculture’s boat.

The key word here is biotechnology. And President Biden is all for it. In fact, he goes so far as to say it should be used to make agriculture more productive and sustainable, create safer and healthier food, protect plants and food animals from pests and diseases, and even help protect the world from environmental harm.

All of this is found in Biden’s recently released Executive Order on “Advancing Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Innovation for a Sustainable, Safe, and Secure American Bioeconomy.”

In the report, the President offers his vision

Continue Reading Biden sees future in ag biotech; food safety included

Climate impacts on diseases including foodborne infections pose a growing threat, according to the European Environment Agency (EEA). 

The agency said there is a need to move from planning to action and to improve awareness among public health and healthcare practitioners, in a report on climate change in Europe.

One chapter looked at climate-sensitive infectious disease threats in Europe, including vibriosis. It also identified groups that are particularly vulnerable and provided an overview of preventive actions.

The prevalence of outbreaks of many vector-, food- or waterborne diseases are affected by climatic conditions or exacerbated by extreme weather events such as

Continue Reading EU report warns of climate impact on foodborne diseases

There is a lack of research on the emerging risks for animal, human and plant health when following a circular economy approach, according to an analysis.

An external scientific report, published by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), found evidence gaps exist in relation to the risks to plant, human and animal health and the environment from novel food and feeds within the circular economy model.

A circular economy aims to maintain the value of products, materials and resources for as long as possible. However, there is a need to identify potential emerging issues for the environment and food and
Continue Reading Review finds gaps in research on circular economy health risks

As the United States enters its third pandemic year, the influences of the virus on the food industry will continue, even as supply chain partners embrace new trends and discard old ones this year not just to survive, but thrive.

John Rowley, vice president of NSF International’s Global Food Division, recently discussed his views on 2022 trends in the food industry, with a focus on food safety issues. NSF specializes in food safety training, testing, consulting and other services.

Rowley said all segments of the supply chain, from producers through retailers and restaurants, continue to shift to meet challenges, even
Continue Reading 2022 Food safety trends: Learning to live with COVID

Stifling heat waves, droughts, devastating forest and wildland fires, flooding, violent cyclones, rising sea levels, human lives lost — we’ve heard about this and more in the news this summer. And while each story is grim enough in itself, they add up to what UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warns is “a code red for humanity.”

That was his reaction to the climate-change report (https://www.ipcc.ch/srccl/) released on Aug. 8. It was done by a panel of 234 authors from all over the world. Known as the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change, it was established in 1988 by the United
Continue Reading Tackling climate change can boost food safety

Opinion

Recently, I did something I had not done in a long time. I ate in a restaurant with my family. Actually, we ate on the outdoor patio, since my kids are too young to be vaccinated and we are somewhat more squeamish than average about COVID, but it was nevertheless a refreshing return to normality and a welcome rest from battling traffic on the way to the Delaware seashore. 

I ordered a salad with blackened salmon. If we make the trip again, I will make a different choice. 

That’s because last week, biotech company AquaBounty Technologies Inc. announced that
Continue Reading Not ready to eat GMO animals? Then you might not want to order the salmon

It’s not agriculture the way most of us think of it: A farmer on a tractor plowing up the soil or a crew of farmworkers harvesting a crop. How could it be? Karim Giscombe, founder and CEO of PLANT-AG, sees the food system as so broken that the only way to fix it is to start all over again.

That’s why he wants to develop the first fully transparent source-to-plate supply chain that has everyone in that chain, including the consumer, in mind. For example, a buyer will be able to track a vegetable or fruit’s journey from where it
Continue Reading Focusing in on the details of the food revolution that is on its way

The CEA (controlled environment agriculture) Food Safety Coalition has announced the first-ever food safety certification program specifically for CEA-grown leafy greens. 

Now members of the  industry coalition can choose to be assessed for the CEA Leafy Greens Module, and upon successful completion will be allowed to use the CEA food-safe seal on certified product packaging.  The CEA Leafy Greens Module enables CEA growers to distinguish produce grown indoors while ensuring the highest standard of quality and compliance is achieved.

“The CEA industry is rapidly expanding and predicted to support more than 10 percent of U.S. vegetable and herb production by
Continue Reading Coalition launches food safety program for indoor-grown leafy greens

Editor’s note: Each Spring, attorneys Bill Marler and Denis Stearns teach a Food Safety Litigation course in the LL.M. Program in Agricultural and Food Law at the University of Arkansas School of Law. This specialized program for attorneys brings together those who are interested in our food system, from farm to table. As a final assignment, students are asked to write an op-ed or essay on food safety, with the best to be selected for publication in Food Safety News. The following is one of the essays for 2021.

Opinion

By Amy Joy Allen

Climate change is no longer
Continue Reading Environmental buzz words: Sustainability vs. Greenwashing