The Group of Seven (G7) has urged recent restrictions imposed on Japanese food products from around Fukushima to be removed.

Trade ministers made the comments at a meeting in Sakai, in Osaka Prefecture, with Japan holding the presidency of the G7 in 2023. The G7 includes Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Japan, Canada, and the United States.

Japan has started releasing treated water stored at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station into the sea. The accident at the site occurred in 2011. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said the discharges would have a “negligible” radiological impact on people

Continue Reading G7 pushes for removal of Japanese food import bans

Public health officials in Hong Kong have investigated a number of recent food poisoning cases linked to a range of different foods.

Earlier this week, the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health revealed a suspected puffer fish poisoning case and reminded people not to consume puffer fish.

The patient is an 84-year-old man who developed dizziness, finger numbness and shortness of breath about one hour after eating cooked puffer fish, which was caught by himself on the same day in local waters. He was admitted to a hospital for treatment and is in stable condition.

Certain

Continue Reading Several food poisoning outbreaks probed in Hong Kong

The European Commission is to lift import restrictions for food from Japan following the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power station in 2011.

Ursula von der Leyen, president of the EU Commission, said the European Union had agreed to remove the remaining restrictive import measures linked to the incident. 

“We have taken this decision based on science, based on evidence and based on the assessment of the International Atomic Energy Agency,” she said.

The Government of Japan welcomed the announcement, adding it had requested the EU and its member states to lift the measures on several occasions.

EU removes restrictions
After the

Continue Reading EU lifts Fukushima checks; other nations raise water discharge concerns

The number of people sick and the number of outbreaks increased this past year in Hong Kong, according to the country’s Centre for Food Safety.

In 2022, the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) received 117 food poisoning outbreak referrals from the Department of Health, affecting 500 people. The number of outbreaks and patients went up from 2021 but figures are still below pre-Coronavirus pandemic levels.

Outbreaks linked to local food premises and businesses were reported to the CFS of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD).

Figures have remained on the low side in the past two years. This may

Continue Reading Hong Kong records rise in outbreaks linked to food outlets

Authorities in Hong Kong are investigating several suspected forged health certificates for oysters.

The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) found discrepancies in the serial numbers of certain health certificates when following up on an incident.

Importers are encouraged to get health certificates issued by authorities in the country of origin to accompany their shipments showing that food products are safe for human consumption.

There are seven potentially forged health certificates submitted by local importer Supreme Fine Food. In six of these documents covering raw oysters, Nicchu Bussan Goudougaisha is listed as the

Continue Reading Hong Kong probes potentially counterfeit health certificates

Oysters from different sources have been linked to illnesses in several countries in recent weeks.

There have been several product withdrawals and recalls plus the closure of production zones in France due to the detection of norovirus.

When announcing the closure of harvesting areas, French authorities reported illnesses but did not say how many and Santé publique France has yet to provide information on cases to Food Safety News.

The problem and the impact on producers has been raised in the French Senate with politicians saying 15 production areas have been closed. They asked what measures the government intended

Continue Reading Contaminated oysters behind several recent outbreaks

Oysters from Ireland have been linked to illnesses in Hong Kong. In other news from the region, China is lifting a 2020 ban on beef exports due to BSE this week.

The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department in Hong Kong ordered the industry to suspend the import of raw oysters harvested in Carlingford Lough in Ireland.

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is investigating a food poisoning cluster affecting 16 people.

Eight males and eight females, aged 25 to 36, developed abdominal pain, diarrhea, dizziness, fever, general weakness

Continue Reading Irish oysters blocked in Hong Kong; beef exports to China resume

An updated version of a hygiene standards guide for the catering sector has been published by a trade group in the United Kingdom.

UKHospitality represents more than 730 companies operating around 85,000 venues across the sector in England, Scotland, and Wales.

The document contains advice and guidance for caterers on how to comply with food hygiene laws and covers the UK, so helps environmental health officers with the enforcement and inspection of caterers. It was developed by industry and is recognized by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and Food Standards Scotland (FSS).

Topics mentioned include cleaning and disinfection, pest control, food hygiene, food waste

Continue Reading Updated hygiene guide launched for caterers

Seven Australian states have recorded more than 100 Vibrio illnesses linked to raw oysters from South Australia.

There are 56 people sick in South Australia since September and three have been hospitalized. Western Australia has 17 cases since late September, Victoria reported 31 illnesses since the first week of October and 15 infections have been recorded in New South Wales. Further illnesses have also been reported in Queensland and the Northern Territory.

Two cases of Vibrio parahaemolyticus were identified in the Australian Capital Territory in people who had recently consumed oysters. Investigations are ongoing to find out where they were
Continue Reading More than 100 sick in Australia as oysters recalled

Officials in Hong Kong are investigating an outbreak of invasive Group B Streptococcus cases linked to handling freshwater fish.

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health asked the public to not consume raw freshwater fish or aquatic products, and to handle such items with caution to avoid contact with wounds, including small cuts and scratches.

This past week, the Hospital Authority, an agency that manages public hospitals, told the CHP that 88 patients had tested positive for invasive Group B Streptococcus (GBS) in September and October, and provided specimens of 68 patients for genetic sequencing analysis.
Continue Reading Hong Kong investigating Group B Streptococcus infections linked to fish