This report describes the outcome of a Food and Veterinary Office audit in Estonia carried out from 10 to 20 June 2014, as part of its programme of audits in Member States.
The objectives of the audit were to verify that official controls of fishery products are organised and carried out in accordance with the relevant provisions of Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 and to evaluate whether the control system in place for the production and placing on the market of
fishery products is in compliance with EU requirements.
The report concludes that there is an organised and documented official control system in place which is in accordance with the relevant provisions of Regulation (EC) No 882/2004. In general, this control system is consistently and adequately implemented and covers the fishery products production chain.
Some shortcomings were identified in the establishment approval process. Official controls are generally implemented in accordance with EU requirements. Nonetheless, certain weaknesses were identified in the control of fishing vessels and landing conditions (including organoleptic checks), HACCP evaluation and verification of food business operators´own-checks for some microbiological criteria.
Furthermore, although steps have been taken by the competent authority to strengthen the system of controls over Baltic Sea fish which may contain dioxins and PCBs above the EU maximum limits, some gaps remain in measures put in place and their implementation by some food business operators.
In the laboratory visited, methods used for official analyses are included in the scope of accreditation. However, deficiencies in validation and internal quality controls were noted in method for histamine analysis.