Thank God it’s Friday! Quick news from the food world (Week 39)

Here’s my selection of article for the week:

– WHO Study Measures Global Burden of Listeriaby James Andrews on in 2010, Listeria monocytogenes was estimated to infect 23,150 people worldwide. It killed 5,463 of them, or 23.6 percent, according to a new study by European researchers in the World Health Organization (WHO) published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.


– Incoming EU food safety commissioner wants deal over meat labelling, by Carmen Paun, in Brussels, on the European Commission should review the issue of country-of-origin labelling (COOL) for meat in processed food and assess who would pay for such a measure, the health and food safety commissioner-designate Vytenis Andriukaitis said today.

– Current rules on GM crops ‘create conflict’, says European Commissioner-designate, by Caroline Scott-Thomas+; the European Commissioner-elect for health and food safety has said he intends to review rules on GM crop cultivation and broker compromise on animal cloning, among other top-priority topics.


– Hong Kong to toughen cooking oil Regulation, by Li Jing: the proposed changes to the laws would include provisions that substandard or recycled cooking oil must not be used as an ingredient for oil manufactured in Hong Kong. Importers of edible oils will also need to get certificates issued by the place of origin to prove their  products are up to standard. At the same time, food manufacturers and restaurants will be required to pass on their used cooking oil to a designated recycler.


– Papaya liar? Italy issues €250,000 fine over ‘distorted’ health claimsby Shane Starling+, on an Italian botanical supplements manufacturer has been given 30 days to pay a €250,000 fine after local authorities busted it for grossly exaggerated and unsubstantiated web-based health claims around immunity, diabetes, HIV, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.


– Commission opens infraction proceedings against UK’s ‘traffic light’ label, by Annie-Rose Harrison-Dunn+ , on the European Commission has formally opened infraction proceedings against the UK for its ‘traffic light’ food labelling system, giving the state two months to defend itself against business complaints.


Food recalls in EU/Week 38

This week on the RASFF database (Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed) we have two recalls from consumers in EU in the alert notifications:

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Salmonella Rissen in chlorella powder, following company’s own check. Origin China (via United Kingdom), notified by Netherlands;

Foreign bodies: plastic fragments in chocolate bars, following a consumer complaint. Origin Finland, notified by Finland, distributed also to Sweden.

Between the alert notifications, followed by a withdrawal from the market of the product, we find:

– Foreign bodies: glass fragments in quorn cordon bleu, following company’s own check. Origin United Kingdom, notified by Belgium;

– Industrial contaminants: benzo(a)pyrene and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in cocoa bean powder, following an official control on the market. Origin Spain, notified by Slovakia;

– Pathogenic and non-pathogenic micro-organisms: Clostridium perfringens and high aerobic plate count in beans and chickpeas, following company’s own check. Origin Germany, notified from Norway;

 Pesticide residues: omethoate and unauthorised substance carbofuran in fresh aubergines, following company’s own check. Origin Malaysia, notified by Netherlands, distributed also to Austria, Finland and Germany;

– Pesticide residues: pyraclostrobin in fresh scarole, following company’s own check. Origin Belgium, notified from Belgium, distributed also to Luxembourg;

– Pesticide residues: chlorpyriphos in turnips, following company’s own check. Origin Belgium, notified from Belgium, distributed also to Luxembourg;

– Pesticide residues: methomyl in papaya, following company’s own check. Origin Malaysia, notified by Netherlands, distributed also to France and Germany;

– Residues of veterinary medicinal products: prohibited substace chloramphenicol in frozen shrimps, following an official control on the market. Origin Vietnam, notified by Germany, distributed also to Netherlands.

Amongst border rejections we have:

– aflatoxins in pistachios, shelled pistachios and in pistachio kernels from Iran, in shelled almonds from Australia, in blanched groundnut kernels from China, in blanched runner groundnuts from Brazil and in ground chilli powder from India;

– Salmonella spp. in betel/paan leaves from India;

– peanuts from China infested with insects;

– chlorpyriphoscyhalothrin and unauthorised substance dichlorvos in oil seeds from Nigeria;

– abnormal smell of black pepper from Vietnam infested with moulds;

– difenoconazole in broccoli from China;

– improper import declaration for frozen fish filets tilapia from China and absence of health certificate(s) for fish oil Omega 3 from the United States;

– mercury in chilled sea bream from Egypt;

– anthraquinone in green tea from China.

For feed, we have an alert notification, followed by a withdrawal from the market:

– Composition: high content of selenium in complete feed for piglets, following company’s own check. Origin Netherlands, notified by Netherlands, distributed also to Germany.

and a border rejection for high count of Enterobacteriaceae in fish meal from Mauritania.

For food contact materials we have a border rejection for migration of primary aromatic amines from slotted spoons from China.

Related articles