Japan lifts the ban on imports of Danish beef after other EU Member States

On 2 February 2016, Japan lifted its long-term ban on Danish beef based on an alleged risk of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE). The decision on products from Denmark follows an earlier opening of the Japanese market to beef products from France, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Poland.

Japan introduced an import ban on beef from the EU in 2001, referring to a risk of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE). This measure went beyond the international standards set by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and did not take into account the stringent control and surveillance measures in place in the European Union guaranteeing the safety of European beef and beef products.

Commissioners Andriukaitis, Malmström and Hogan, responsible respectively for trade, agriculture and food safety, agree that “it is good news that Japan continues to approve beef exports from EU Member States. We look forward to seeing Japan open its market to remaining EU Member States in the near future. All Commission services, together with the EU Delegation to Japan, are working towards opening the Japanese market for EU beef and beef products for all those Member States that are interested in exporting”.

This is also an encouraging signal for those EU Member States that have also applied to export beef, and whose equally high level of food safety has been internationally recognised by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

Exports of beef and beef products from the EU to Japan resumed in 2013. The exports from the first 4 authorised Member States were worth €4.6 million in the first half of 2015. For Danish beef exports to effectively resume, Denmark will now need to designate the exporting establishments.

(Source: DG Sante)

Food recalls in EU – Week 48/2015

This week on the EU RASFF (Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed) we can find the following notifications:

1. Alerts followed by a recall from consumers:

2. Information for attention/for follow up followed by a recall from consumers:

3. Alerts followed by a withdrawal from the market:

4. Seizures:

None.

5. Border rejections:

  • acetamiprid (0.081 mg/kg – ppm) in pomegranates from Turkey
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 125; Tot. = 147 / B1 = 47; Tot. = 53 µg/kg – ppb) in pistachios in shell from Iran
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 15.6; Tot. = 17.4 µg/kg – ppb) in pistachios from the United States
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 17.4; Tot. = 18.4 µg/kg – ppb) in chilli powder from Bangladesh
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 27.8; Tot. = 29.39 µg/kg – ppb) in organic hazelnuts, dried figs, (B1 = 32; Tot. = 36 / B1 = 99.1; Tot. = 162.3 / B1 = 16.3; Tot. = 17.29 µg/kg – ppb) in shelled hazelnuts (B1 = 64.95; Tot. = 75.06 µg/kg – ppb) and in crushed roasted hazelnuts (B1 = 7.4; Tot. = 22 / B1 = 9.6; Tot. = 22 µg/kg – ppb) from Turkey
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 7.8; Tot. = 8.8 µg/kg – ppb) in groundnuts from Argentina
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 9.0 µg/kg – ppb) in crushed chillies from India
  • copper (115 mg/kg – ppm) in vine leaves in brine from Turkey
  • FEED: aflatoxins (B1 = 60.3 µg/kg – ppb) in peanuts for bird feeding from Brazil
  • fenpropathrin (0.017 mg/kg – ppm) and imidacloprid (0.021 mg/kg – ppm) and unauthorised substance tolfenpyrad (0.11 mg/kg – ppm) in green tea from Turkey
  • fraudulent health certificate(s) for frozen barramundi fillets (Lates spp) from China
  • improper health certificate(s) for shrimps (Penaeus duorarum) from Côte d’Ivoire with improper packaging (too porous)
  • ivermectin (4.0 µg/kg – ppb) unauthorised in frozen barramundi (Lates spp) from Vietnam
  • mercury (0.78 mg/kg – ppm) in chilled John Dory (Zeus faber) from Tunisia
  • poor temperature control of frozen Argentine red shrimp (Pleoticus muelleri) from Argentina, frozen crabs (Cardisoma spp) and frozen raw lobsters (Panulirus argus) from Honduras, frozen fillets of mackerel (Scomber spp) and dolphinfish (Coryphaena) from China
  • propargite (0.204 mg/kg – ppm) in dried tomatoes from Tunisia
  • Salmonella (1 out of 5 samples /25g) in betel leaves from India
  • Salmonella (presence /25g) in hulled sesame seeds from India
  • shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (in 1 out of 5 samples /25g) in chilled beef from Brazil
  • stones (1.2 %) in white pepper husk from Vietnam
  • too high content of colour E 102 – tartrazine (0.65 %) and unauthorised use of colour E 110 – Sunset Yellow FCF (47.5 mg/kg – ppm) in frozen sweet corn pastry from Colombia
  • too high content of sulphite (2143 mg/kg – ppm) in dried apricots from Turkey
  • unauthorised substance aldrin in chilled peppers from Turkey
  • unauthorised substance carbendazim (1.5 mg/kg – ppm) in peas from Kenya
  • unauthorised substance profenofos (0.04 mg/kg – ppm) in black olives in brine from Peru