UK – Man arrested in DNP illegal selling operation

The man from West London is suspected of supplying this highly toxic chemical which has been misused as a fat burning supplement and has been the cause of a number of recent deaths.

This morning, Ealing and Harrow Borough Councils, accompanied by the FSA’s National Food Crime Unit (NFCU) have conducted searches on two properties in Ealing and Harrow alongside the Metropolitan Police.

A significant amount of a substance believed to be DNP was found at the premises.

The NFCU launched an operation in April 2015 following the death of 21-year old Eloise Parry after she had bought DNP online. As a result, several websites were identified by the NFCU as selling DNP as a slimming aid and were subsequently closed down.

Andy Morling, Head of Food Crime at the Food Standards Agency, said: ‘It is illegal to sell DNP for human consumption as it is a dangerous industrial chemical. Last year, DNP was responsible for five deaths. I would like to thank all those involved in this operation that aimed to tackle the online sale of DNP. It is our close working partnership with local authorities, law enforcement agencies and internet companies in the UK and abroad that has enabled us to close these websites and work to disrupt possible supply chains.’

‘The FSA and its partners would like to use this as an opportunity to once again highlight the dangers of DNP. It is an industrial chemical and is not made to be consumed as a diet supplement. Please do not be persuaded by the claims being made, those selling DNP do not care about your wellbeing.’

DNP has legitimate uses in areas such as biochemical research and in manufacturing chemicals. For this reason, DNP is not illegal for sale but it is illegal where sold for human consumption.

(Source: FSA website)

Books – Risk Regulation in Non-Animal Food Imports (Montanari F. et al.)

My dear friend Francesco Montanari recently published this excellent book – co-authored with Veronika Jezso and Carlo Donati – which highlights one of the less explored areas of food law: the import of food of non-animal origin. Despite these products are traditionally considered less dangerous than food of animal origin, recent food crisis showed that this stereotype is set to change. Moreover, this subject has a major impact on market access and, more generally, on trade flows in a globalized and theoretically liberalized market.

Risk Regulation in Non-Animal Food Imports,  Montanari F., Jezso V., Donati. C., Springer Brief February 2015. Here you can download the table of contents.

This latest Springer Brief aims at providing a general understanding of the rationale – scientific as well as political – behind EU policy and related risk management decisions regarding imports of food of non-animal origin. Indeed, over the last years, threats deriving from imported food of non-animal origin seem to have multiplied, including sprout seeds contaminated with E. coli  and strawberries containing hepatitis A or noroviruses.

Against this background, the authors explain the mechanism of reinforced controls at EU borders on certain imports of non-animal origin as well as the wide spectrum of EU emergency measures  currently imposing trade restrictions on some of those products considered as presenting a high risk for public health. They also examine all chemical and non-chemical risks that may be associated with imports of non-animal origin and their impact on human health, taking into account the scientific output by the European Food Safety Authority.