Melissa Townson Training                                         - Passionate about training
Current News and Updates in Food Safety
 
 
 
How safe is food served by pop-up street outlets?
13th October 2013
 
 
Street food is increasingly popular across the UK with a boom in outlets and festivals dedicated to the cuisine. But how effectively is street food policed and is this sufficient to ensure public safety? Read more
 
 
 
Reminder for those with food allergies
 
Last updated on 31 January 2013
 
 
The Food Standards Agency is urging people with food allergies to always check the ingredients when eating out. This advice follows recent cases of severe and fatal allergic reactions. Read more
 
 
Scottish botulism outbreak report published
 10th August 2012
Health Protection Scotland, on behalf of the Incident Management Team, have today published the final report into an outbreak of foodborne botulism in Scotland in November 2011.
This outbreak affected three children from one family in the NHS Forth Valley area. The vehicle of intoxication was found to be a single jar of a commercially produced korma sauce.
 
The report into this outbreak can be found at the HPS link below.
 
Awareness of botulism symptoms urged
Read the original news story on outbreak
 
 
Street parties without red tape
Tuesday 22 May 2012

With the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games approaching fast, it’s street party time again. The Food Standards Agency has produced some common-sense guidance to help things run smoothly and safely.
 
Some people are under the mistaken impression that organising neighbourhood parties requires more red tape that it would take to tie up 100 sandwich boxes. That’s not the case.
 
The FSA advice answers some commonly asked questions. It points out that one-off street parties and events require neither food hygiene certificates nor the formation of food businesses. It also explains where to get more information about good food hygiene practices.
                 Read more: Street parties your questions answered
 
 
Food hygiene training videos online
Monday 14 May 2012
 
 

 
The Food Standards Agency has published 10 short videos to help caterers produce food safely. Each video is about a minute long and covers specific food hygiene practices.
 
These training resources are designed to illustrate messages within the ‘Safer food, better business’ packs and they follow the same innovative and practical approach to food safety management as the packs. Read more
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
London 2012: we have the tools
Monday 14 May 2012
 

 
The Food Standards Agency has published a toolkit and newsletter for stakeholders to support their participation in the Agency’s Play it Safe campaign. This campaign is helping to ensure that food bought, cooked and eaten during the 2012 Olympics is safe.
 
The toolkit provides suggestions on how stakeholders, such as food businesses, tourism groups and trade associations, can contribute to the campaign. These include posting details of the campaign on company websites and in newsletters, using social media and issuing press releases. The toolkit also answers frequently asked questions about the campaign and about food hygiene and safety. Read more
 
 
 
 
 
On your marks, get set, go...
Tuesday 3 April 2012
The countdown to the London 2012 Olympics continues, and the latest issue of Bite provides a preview of how the FSA and other members of ‘Food Safety Team UK’ are preparing for the Games.
Today, the Agency launched a campaign to let visitors to the Games know how they can ‘Play it safe’ with food during their visit, but our contribution involves much more than offering advice. Read more
 
 
 
Olympic food safety campaign launched
Tuesday 3 April 2012
 
The Food Standards Agency has launched the Play it Safe campaign, to raise awareness of food safety during the London 2012 Games. The Agency is working with food businesses and food safety enforcement officers to ensure all food sold, cooked and eaten during the Games is safe. Read more
 
 
 
Guidance on setting up a food stall during the  Olympics
Wednesday 28 March 2012
 
The Food Standards Agency is reminding anyone who is considering setting up a stall selling refreshments during the Olympics to plan ahead. To help, the Agency has produced guidance answering the most frequently asked questions.
 
Selling food during the Olympics frequently asked questions
 
 
 
Allergy myth-buster tool launched
Tuesday 7 February 2012

An online tool aimed at dispelling myths about food allergy and intolerance has been launched on the NHS Choices website, with the help of the Food Standards Agency.
The tool, developed in conjunction with FSA allergy experts, looks at common misconceptions about food allergies and intolerance's and sorts the facts from fiction.
 
Cause for concern list published
Monday 23 January 2012
Starting today, the Food Standard Agency is routinely publishing the full list of those meat plants that, on the basis of their audit reports, are considered 'cause for concern'.
This follows agreement by the FSA Board last year to publish this information as part of the FSA’s ongoing commitment to openness and transparency. Last week, the FSA began the regular publication of audit reports of approved meat plants in England, Scotland and Wales. Read more
 
 
Food Safety and Hygiene e-learning course for schools launched
Monday 16 January 2012
The Food Standards Agency in Wales has announced that it will be making available an e-learning course 'Level 2 Food Safety and Hygiene (Catering)' to schools in Wales. Read more
Gluten advice for consumers
Thursday 12 January 2012

The Food Standards Agency has produced a factsheet to help people who have an intolerance to gluten (a protein found in cereals) understand a new food labelling law, which came into force on 1 January 2012. Gluten intolerance is a serious illness that can result in damage to the digestive system so foods are not absorbed properly, which can lead to poor growth, anaemia and bone disease. Read more
Claims about gluten: Fact sheet for caterers
Claims about gluten: Fact sheet for consumers advice
Printing inks and mineral oils survey results
Thursday 15 December 2011
The Food Standards Agency has published the results of its survey looking at the migration into food of selected printing ink components from printed carton-board packaging materials.The results also include work on the presence of mineral oils in some of the food packaging samples. Based on the results, the FSA's advice is that there is no need for consumers to change their eating habits. Read more
Egg advice past its best
Wednesday 14 December 2011
As part of a drive to cut food waste, the Food Standards Agency has revised its advice on using eggs after their ‘best before’ date. The advice now is that, providing the eggs are cooked thoroughly, they can be eaten a day or two after their ‘best before’ date. Read more
New food labelling regulation published
Thursday 8 December 2011
 
The new Food Information Regulation (FIR), designed to make food labelling easier to understand for consumers, has been published by the European Union.
The regulation combines rules on general food and nutrition labelling into a single EU regulation (see link below). Transitional arrangements set out in the FIR mean that the bulk of the requirements will not apply until 2014, with nutrition labelling becoming mandatory in 2016. Read more
Channelling a safer Christmas meal
Wednesday 7 December 2011
 
 
The Food Standards Agency has teamed up with Channel 4 to sponsor its Christmas recipe web pages over the holiday season. This allows the Agency to highlight its Christmas food hygiene and safety messages to a wider audience as they plan their Christmas menus.Read more
Research finds improved hygiene measures on poultry farms
Tuesday 6 December 2011
A report published by the Food Standards Agency highlights improvements in hygiene on poultry farms in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Consistent application of hygiene measures on farms is important to prevent farmed poultry from becoming infected with campylobacter.Read more
Food poisoning risk from chicken liver pate
Friday 2 December 2011

The Food Standards Agency is reminding people to cook chicken livers thoroughly if making pate, to reduce the risk of food poisoning. New figures from the Health Protection Agency (HPA) reveal that 90% of campylobacter outbreaks at catering venues were linked to undercooked chicken liver pate. Campylobacter is the most common cause of food poisoning in the UK. Read more
Reminder on avoiding foodborne botulism
Friday 25 November 2011

The Food Standards Agency is reiterating its advice on the safe storage and use of food, after Clostridium botulinum was found in a single jar of ready-prepared sauce.
Companies must take Clostridium botulinum and other food safety issues into account when formulating and processing their products, to ensure they will be safe to eat. Read more
Vegetables: best served washed
Tuesday 22 November 2011

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has today launched a new campaign reminding people to wash raw vegetables to help minimise the risk of food poisoning.
The campaign is in response to E.coli outbreaks in Britain and abroad this year including one linked to soil on raw vegetables and another caused by contaminated sprouted seeds. Read more
Survey of mycotoxins published
Tuesday 22 November 2011

The Food Standards Agency has published the results of a survey looking at levels of mycotoxins in food. Mycotoxins are chemicals produced by certain moulds. Read more
Agency updates answers on cross-contamination control
Tuesday 22 November 2011

The Food Standards Agency has today published the second edition of the Q&A on its guidance document 'E.coli O157: control of cross-contamination' Read more
EHOs to be given new powers
11th November 2011
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has said plans to allow EHOs to immediately close down unsafe food businesses without recourse to the courts will not prove a burden on industry. Read more
Public Health Report supports CIEH recommendations
Publication Date:
2nd November 2011
Subject: Public health
 
 
The Health Select Committee's Public Health Report released today supports a key CIEH argument that there should be a statutory duty of cooperation on councils in two-tier local government parts of England for public health and wellbeing. Read more
Salmonella contamination of paan leaves
Thursday 3 November 2011
he Food Standards Agency is warning people about the potential risk of salmonella food poisoning from paan leaves, also known as betel leaves.
Update on products free of colours associated with hyperactivity
Tuesday 1 November 2011

The Food StandardsAgency has updated its list of product ranges that do not contain the six food colours associated with possible hyperactivity in young children. Read more
Latest FSA e-News available online
Friday 21 October 2011
The October edition of FSA e-News is a meaty issue. It includes a report on Agency plans to charge for meat official controls. An updated assessment of the impact of these proposals has recently been sent to the independent Regulatory Policy Committee, and the Agency awaits its opinion. Read more
Legionnaires' link to Corfu holiday
7th October 2011
 
There have been nine cases of Legionnaires' disease in the UK, all linked to travel to Corfu in August, according to the Health Protection Agency. Read more
 
Consumers reminded to wash veg
Friday 30 September 2011
 

 
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is reminding consumers to follow good hygiene practices when storing and preparing vegetables, following two recent E.coli outbreaks.Read more

Air pollution takes six months off peoples' lives, conference told
26th September 2011

Air pollution reduces life expectancy in the UK bysix months
delegates were told today at a conference organised by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) to mark the first World Environmental Health Day. Read more
 
Upset stomachs cost UK 11 million working days
Tuesday 6 September 2011
Nearly 17 million people suffer from stomach upsets in the UK every year, leading to about 11 million lost working days, new research published today by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has found. Read more
Warning on botulism outbreak in France
Thursday 8 September 2011
The Food Standards Agency is warning people not to consume certain branded foods that have been linked to an outbreak of botulism in France. Botulism is a rare but serious illness that causes muscle weakness and breathing problems, and can be fatal.
Outbreak of salmonella in eggs now over
Monday 5 September 2011

An outbreak of salmonella food poisoning in the UK that was linked to eggs from a farm in Spain has been declared over. Read more
 
 
Warning about drinking 'Zam Zam' water
Wednesday 3 August 2011
As Muslims observe Ramadan, the FSA advises that people should consider avoiding drinking bottled water described or labelled as Zam Zam water. This is because tests have shown ‘Zam Zam’ water sold in the UK, or brought into the UK for personal consumption, may contain high levels of arsenic or nitrates. Read more
Latest issue of FSA e-News available online
Monday 25 July 2011
Front line enforcement staff who work day-in, day-out to ensure our food is safe, are the invisible heroes of our food-safety system. This month’s FSA e-News reports on how the BBC has managed to bring them out of the shadows by following some of them as they carry out their daily routines. Read more
EHN website heart of new service
Friday 15th July 2011
EHN is celebrating 25 years of success and is sharing this success with CIEH members by launching and introducing a new range of new information and communication services including a brand new website, weekly email newsletter, job alerts and re-focused print magazine. Read more
Safer food better business
Friday 15th July 2011
European Commission has placed a ban on the imports of fenugreek seeds sourced from Egypt as they have been linked with the two recent outbreaks of E.coli O104 in Germany and France. They ban will be imposed until 31 October 2011. Read more
Update on E.coli O104 outbreaks
Thursday 7 July 2011
The European Commission has confirmed details of the withdrawal from sale of certain batches of fenugreek seeds sourced from Egypt, which have been linked to two recent outbreaks of E.coli O104 in Germany and France. Read more
EFSA taskforce report on E. coli O104 outbreaks
Tuesday 5 July 2011
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has today published its report into the possible source of the recent E. coli O104 outbreaks in Germany and France. In line with this report, the Food Standards Agency is confirming its current precautionary advice.Read more
FSA advice on sprouted seeds and E.coli
FSA Friday 1 July 2011
While investigations into the source of the recent outbreaks of E. coli O104:H4 in France and Germany are continuing, the Agency is reminding people that sprouted seeds should not be eaten raw. Read more
Improved risk-based dairy inspections
FSA Thursday 30 June 2011
From 1 July 2011, the Agency will be changing the frequency of official hygiene inspections on dairy farms in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, to make the system more proportionate to the food safety risks. Read more
Research on allergy labelling use
FSA Thursday 23 June 2011

New research, published today by the Food Standards Agency, provides insights on how people with life-threatening nut allergies use food labels when choosing what food to buy and eat. The research will be used to help produce clearer allergy information for consumers. Read more
FHRS achieves 150 local authority adopters
FSA - Tuesday 14 June 2011
Newcastle-Under-Lyme Borough Council has today become the 150th local authority in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to roll out the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. Other local authorities will be rolling out the scheme over the next few months. Ratings from all participating councils can be found at food.gov.uk/ratings. Read more
Agency update on E. coli outbreak in Germany
FSA- Friday 10 June 2011

The German authorities have today updated their position on the E. coli outbreak in Germany.
While they are still unable to identify definitively the source, officials have said that further evidence suggests sprouted seeds, such as lentils, alfalfa, fenugreek and adzuki beans, are likely to be a potential source of the outbreak. They have advised German consumers that they no longer need to avoid eating cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce, but have said that raw sprouted seeds should not be eaten. Read more
Food law guidance published
Monday 16 May 2011
 

 
The Food Standards Agency has published updated Practice Guidance for the Food Law Code of Practice. The Practice Guidance takes into account developments in enforcement since the previous version was published in 2006.
An insight into attitudes to food
Thursday 3 March 2011

The Agency has published the first wave of an extensive new survey called Food and You, which reveals information about people’s behaviour and attitudes towards food issues such as food safety and healthy eating, and their knowledge of these issues.
Guidance to prevent E.coli contamination
Tuesday 15 February 2011

The FSA has today issued guidance to clarify the steps that food businesses need to take to control the risk of contamination from the food bug E.coli O157.
Serious outbreaks of E.coli in Scotland in 1996 and Wales in 2005 resulted in serious illness in some individuals and, in a few cases, death. These outbreaks were attributed to cross-contamination arising from the poor handling of food. This guidance has been developed to remind food businesses what they should be doing to protect their customers from the serious consequences of E.coli food poisoning.
Follow food safety throughout the food chain
Tuesday 15 February 2011
Worried about where your food comes from and whether it’s safe to eat? Well, if you take a big ‘Bite’ of the Agency’s quarterly magazine we hope you’ll find some reassurance about how much is being done to safeguard your food from the time it enters the UK until it is on your dinner plates. Read more
Update on dioxin contamination of pig and poultry feed in Germany
Thursday 6 January 2011
The Food Standards Agency has received further information in relation to the ongoing investigation into the dioxin contamination of pig and poultry feed in Germany. Read more
Turkey tips for Christmas
Wednesday 15 December 2010
The Food Standards Agency is reminding people to follow some simple safety steps this Christmas when preparing their turkeys, to help keep the festive period free from the misery of food poisoning. Read more
Report links undercooked liver to campylobacter food poisoning
Friday 3 December 2010

The Health Protection Agency has today published a report of outbreaks of campylobacter food poisoning linked to chicken liver products. The Food Standards Agency is therefore reminding caterers to make sure chicken liver is cooked thoroughly. Read more
Update on products free of colours associated with hyperactivity
Wednesday 1 December 2010
The Agency has updated its list of product ranges that do not contain the six food colours associated with possible hyperactivity in young children.
Another three companies producing product lines free of the colours have been added to the list: Costa Coffee, Costcutter Supermarkets and Morning Foods. Read more
National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme launched
Tuesday 30 November 2010
 

 
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is today launching a national food hygiene rating scheme that will help you choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving you information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, pubs, cafes, takeaways, hotels, supermarkets, and other places you eat out and buy food.  Read more
You can search for food businesses and their hygiene ratings at food.gov.uk/ratings.
Cloned meat is safe – hypothetically speaking
Thursday 25 November 2010
At the open meeting of the Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes (ACNFP) today, the committee considered a hypothetical application under the Novel Foods Regulations for the approval of meat and milk from cloned cattle and their progeny. Read more
Survey of mycotoxins in cereal-based foods
Thursday 25 November 2010
The Agency has published the results of a survey investigating the levels of certain naturally-occurring chemicals called mycotoxins in a range of cereals and-cereal based foods. This is the first year's results from a four-year rolling surveillance programme.
Food law guide published
Tuesday 19 October 2010
The Food Standards Agency is today publishing a quick-check guide to food law, which will be updated every three months.
It covers all food legislation in the UK. Where we have listed a Statutory Instrument that applies in only one UK country, we have given the details of any equivalent legislation in the other UK countries. Read more
Decrease in food safety training a 'ticking time bomb' says CIEH
Food businesses in the UK are cutting back on food safety training, according to our survey. Read more
View a summary of CIEH survey results here.   
Restaurant dishcloths 'full of bacteria'
 Dish cloths used in restaurants and takeaways harbour unsavoury and possibly dangerous bacteria, the Health Protection Agency (HPA) has said. Read  more
Hedgerow harvest
Thursday 14 October 2010
It is autumn, and many of our hedgerows are prime sites for the traditional pursuits of gathering wild berries and hunting for mushrooms. This harvest can contribute to our daily diet, but care needs to be taken to make sure it is safe to eat. Read more
Agency advice on cooking bean sprouts
Wednesday 29 September 2010
The Food Standards Agency has today updated its advice to people on the handling and cooking of raw bean sprouts following more cases of food poisoning linked to an outbreak of salmonella.
Warning against consumption of Miracle Mineral Solution
Friday 24 September 2010
The FSA is urgently warning people not to consume Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS). This product is being sold as an oral supplement and is also known as Miracle Mineral Supplement. Read more
Food Hygiene Rating Scheme update
Thursday 19 August 2010
The Food Standards Agency has today written to all local authorities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to tell them about local launches of the national Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS), its branding and other developments.
FHRS will help consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving them information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, pubs, cafes, takeaways, hotels, supermarkets, and other places they eat out and buy food. Read more
Agency advice on scombrotoxic fish poisoning
Friday 13 August 2010
The Food Standards Agency is reminding caterers and consumers of the importance of refrigerating fish properly, following a number of incidents involving scombrotoxic fish poisoning during the summer. Read more.
FSA statement on cloned animals and their offspring
Monday 2 August 2010
There have been recent reports in the media that milk from the offspring of cloned bovines is on sale in the UK. Since 2007, the Food Standards Agency’s interpretation of the law has been that meat and products from clones and their offspring are considered novel foods and would therefore need to be authorised before being placed on the market. Read more
Warning about drinking 'Zam Zam' water
Friday 30 July 2010
As Muslims observe Ramadan, the FSA advises that people should consider avoiding drinking bottled water described or labelled as Zam Zam water. This is because tests have shown ‘Zam Zam’ water sold in the UK, or brought into the UK for personal consumption, contains high levels of arsenic or nitrates. Read more
Update on products free of colours associated with hyperactivity
Friday 30 July 2010
The Food standards Agency has updated its list of product ranges that do not contain the six food colours associated with possible hyperactivity in young children. Read more.
Caterers warned on chicken livers
Wednesday 28 July 2010
The Food Standards Agency is reminding caterers to make sure chicken livers are handled hygienically and cooked thoroughly when used in products such as pâté or parfait. This follows a number of outbreaks of campylobacter food poisoning linked with chicken liver products where the livers may have been undercooked. Read more
Compulsory warnings on colours in food and drink
FSA - Thursday 22 July 2010
An EU-wide health warning must now be put on any food or drink that still contains the colours that are thought to cause hyperactivity in some children. This is following the Southampton Study, commissioned by the Agency, which suggested a possible link between consumption of six food colours and hyperactivity in children. Read more
Agency consults on E.coli prevention
Wednesday 14 July 2010
The Food Standards Agency has today started a UK-wide consultation on the best way to help businesses better protect against E. Coli O157 contamination.
Walkers recalls some crisps
Wednesday 14 July 2010
Walkers has recalled some packets of its Ready Salted Crisps and Salt & Vinegar Crisps sold in multipacks, because the packets might contain crisps with other seasonings. This means the products are a possible health risk to people with an allergy to milk, soya or barley, or an intolerance to lactose or gluten.
FSA commissions campylobacter research
Tuesday 6 July 2010
The Food Standards Agency is commissioning a range of research to tackle the food poisoning bug campylobacter. Read more.
Safety boost for outdoor events
Publication Date: 25th June 2010
Environmental protection New guidance to improve food safety and health and safety at outdoor events was launched today by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH).
The guidance aims to create a consistent national standard for outdoor catering management in time for the summer music festival season and beyond. Read more.
Health advice for travellers to the World Cup 2010
The World Health Organisation has published a leaflet giving World Cup travellers advice on how to avoid food poisoning this summer. Read more
Tree of Life dried apricots contain sulphur dioxide
Tuesday 8 June 2010
Tree of Life Dried Apricots contain the allergen sulphur dioxide, which is not mentioned on the product label. This makes this product a possible risk to anyone who is sensitive to sulphites. The Agency has issued an Allergy Alert.
Anyone who is sensitive to sulphites is advised not to eat this product. Some people with asthma are sensitive to sulphites and relatively small amounts may trigger an asthma attack. Read more
Give food bugs the red card this summer
Monday 7 June 2010
Food Safety Week starts today, and with many people likely to have barbecues or be eating outdoors for World Cup matches, the Food Standards Agency is reminding everyone that food bugs can cause more misery than a penalty shoot-out. Read more
Food Safety Week – safe outdoor eating
Monday 7 June 2010
Food Safety Week starts today (7 – 13 June) and with many people likely to have barbecues or be eating outdoors, the Food Standards Agency is reminding everyone that food bugs can cause misery to consumers. Read more
Cockroaches Share 'Recommendations' of Best Food Sources, Research Finds
ScienceDaily (June 7, 2010)
Ever wondered how cockroaches seem to know the best place to grab a meal? New research at Queen Mary, University of London suggests that, just like humans, they share their local knowledge of the best food sources and follow 'recommendations' from others. Read more
Food poisoning cases expected to 'peak' in May
Cases of one of the most common forms of food poisoning, Campylobacter, are expected to peak in Wales this week. Read more
Rate of Childhood Peanut Allergies More Than Tripled from 1997 to 2008
ScienceDaily (May 13, 2010)
Results of a nationwide telephone survey have shown that the rate of peanut allergies in children more than tripled from 1997 to 2008. The data are reported in the May 12 issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Read more
Norovirus vs disinfectants and sanitizers: studies published
A recent Université Laval report has published details of its study into the effectiveness of commercially-available disinfectants against Norovirus. For full story, click here.
Meanwhile, soap and water has been found to be no less effective in combating Norovirus than some alcohol sanitizers, according to a study by Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.
Pop goes the weevil
A recent recall of microwave popcorn was carried out due to a risk of weevil infestation, reports Metro.co.uk.
Children warned that kissing frogs brings illness, not handsome prince
More than 50 children in the US became ill with Salmonella after kissing frogs and turtles, apparently copying the actions of the heroine of a popular animated movie, reports the Daily Express.
KFC admits hygiene breaches at Leicester Square branch
The Independant: Thursday, 8 April 2010
Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) today admitted breaching hygiene rules at one of the busiest branches in Britain
New fish labelling rules
FSA Tuesday 6 April 2010
New rules for fish labelling come into force today for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The Fish Labelling Regulations 2010 replace the previous Regulations, add new commercial designations (the names of fish) for species of fish that have recently come onto the market and give extra options for some others that were already listed. Read more
'Hormone Therapy' for Food Poisoning Bacteria
ScienceDaily (Mar.29, 2010)
Pathogenic bacteria in the gut recognise their surroundings by detecting hormone signals from the host, which can prompt them to express lethal toxins. Intercepting these hormonal messages could be a better way to treat serious food-borne infections where antibiotics do more harm than good. Read more
A Two-in-One Test for Detecting E. Coli in Ground Beef and Other Foods
ScienceDaily (Mar. 29, 2010) — Scientists have reported on the development of the first two-in-one test that can simultaneously detect both the E. coli bacteria responsible for terrible food poisoning outbreaks, and the toxins, or poisons, that the bacteria use to cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other symptoms in its victims. Read more
Biofilm Production Aids Campylobacter Survival
ScienceDaily (Mar. 29, 2010) — Scientists at the Institute of Food Research have found a way that the foodborne pathogen Campylobacter can survive in the environment. Read more
Agency hosts international conference on campylobacter
Monday 29 March 2010
The Food Standards Agency is this week hosting an international conference to identify new ways of reducing the levels of the food bug campylobacter in UK chicken.
Campylobacter is the most common bacterial cause of food poisoning, causing an estimated 300,000 cases of illness every year in England and Wales alone. A recent survey carried out by the Agency showed that campylobacter was present in 65% of samples of chicken tested.Read more
Agency welcomes Consumer Focus Wales E.coli report
Tuesday 23 March 2010
The Food Standards Agency today welcomes the publication of the Consumer Focus Wales report: 'Protecting consumers from E.coli O157'.
The report refers to progress by the Agency and others in implementing the recommendations in the Pennington report on the Public Inquiry into the E.coli outbreak in South Wales in 2005. The Agency agrees that while much has already been done, there is more still to do.
The Mode of Action of Certain Toxins That Accumulate in Seafood
ScienceDaily (Mar. 17, 2010) — Toxins released by certain microalgae can contaminate fish and shellfish which then become toxic to humans. Researchers from CNRS (1) and CEA (2) have, for the first time, identified the mechanisms of action of two of these toxins. They have shown how and why they cause neurological symptoms. These findings could provide a basis for the development of new tests to screen for these toxins. Read more
The future for meat hygiene controls
Tuesday 16 March 2010
The Food Standards Agency has started a programme of work to review the current system of regulation of meat hygiene inspection activities and enforcement (known as 'meat official controls').
This work is aimed at improving public health protection while delivering a more risk-based, effective and proportionate system for meat official controls. As well as consumer protection, proposals for a new inspection regime will take account of animal health and welfare considerations.
 Some Butterkist Sweet Microwave Popcorn recalled because of possible rice weevil
Friday 12 March 2010
Tangerine Confectionary has recalled some batches of Butterkist Sweet Microwave Popcorn due to the potential presence of rice weevil (Sitophilus oryzae) within the product. The Agency has issued a Food Alert for Information.
Three multipack batches and one single pack batch have been recalled. Read more
Minister calls for region to assess food safety
                     Tuesday 23 Feb 2010
Dramatic changes in global food consumption patterns, consumer trends and food manufacturing processes have had a significant impact on food safety which today's industry professionals must address, a Dubai official has asserted.
 New magazine from the FSA
27 februaruy 2010
To mark their 10th anniversary, the Food Standards Agency has launched a brand new quarterly magazine called 'Bite'. It contains Agency news, interviews and much more. Download their first issue from www.food.gov.uk/bite Read more
 Supermarket giant fined over mice in store
23 february 2010
A branch of Tesco in Suffolk has been ordered to pay out thousands of pounds after mice were seen running around the store, a council has said. Read more
How Clean Is Your Knife?
ScienceDaily (Jan. 20, 2010) — A new fast-acting disinfectant that is effective against bacteria, viruses, fungi and prions could help to reduce the spread of deadly infections in hospitals, according to research published in the February issue of Journal of General Virology.
Bacteraemia Archives 2009
The  latest Bacteraemia Routine Data Reports  
                  Enteric 2009
                          Enteric Routine Data Reports
                     Read more
Update on investigation into increase of Salmonella
The Food Standards Agency has issued an update on the investigation into a recent increase in England and Wales in the number of cases of a certain type of salmonella.
Defra's new guidelines to reduce salmonella in feed
The Department of the Environment, food and rural affairs (Defra) has published a new code of practice for the control of salmonella in animal feeds. Read more
Food group set up after E. coli
The mother of a five-year old boy who died in an E. Coli outbreak is to speak at the launch of a group to improve trust in food safety in Wales. Read more
Children in safer hands with SFBB
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has launched a 'Safer food better business' (SFBB) pack exclusively for childminders. Read more
Consumer Confidence in FSA's food safety role
Consumers continue to be confident that the Food Standards Agency is protecting their health with regard to food safety, according to results from the September tracker survey of consumer views on key FSA issues, which has just been published. Read more
Fraudsters target food businesses
The Food Standards Agency is warning food business owners to be aware of fraudsters claiming they are from the Agency. The Food Standards Agency does not carry out food inspections – if your business is targeted by anyone claiming to be from the Agency, do not part with any money and contact local police. Read more 
Health and Safety Statistics 2008/2009
The latest national statistics on work-related illness and injury, produced by the Health and Safety Executive, were released on 28 October 2009 according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.The latest national statistics on work-related illness and injury, produced by the Health and Safety Executive, were released on 28 October 2009 according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.
Science Video News
 
Keeping Food For Years
Certain Dry Foods Are Good Past Their Best-before Date, Food      Scientists Say
February 1, 2007 Some low-moisture foods such as dried apples can be safe to eat even years after their expiration date, if properly stored, food chemists say. They verified this in a tasting experiment of 28-year-old rolled oats. Heat, moisture and light can degrade food's nutritional value.
Science Video News
  
Are our Dishes Clean?
What Kills E Coli and Salmonella Bacteria?
August 1, 2007 — Food scientists at The Ohio State University wanted to see if cooler water could kill bacteria on dirty dishes like E. coli and salmonella. The study found that even when dishes were washed in cooler temperatures, it still cleaned enough bacteria away to levels accepted in the food and drug administration's food code
Safety and Hygiene
The Food Standards Agency carries out a range of work to make sure food is safe to eat, including funding research on chemical, microbiological and radiological safety, as well as food hygiene and allergy.
The details of our day-to-day work on safety and hygiene, including policy, business and our research programmes are set out below. A guide to the main general food law requirements, including the provisions on food safety, is in the food industries section of this website.
For consumer advice on food allergy, hygiene tips on storing and preparing food at home, plus information about food poosininig, vist the FSA eatwell website.
Chemical safety
Determining safe levels of the naturally-occurring or deliberately-added chemicals in food which are potentially harmful to health. Read more
 
 
Microbiological safety
The FSA promotes the microbiological safety of food throughout the food chain. It is responsible for the strategy for reducing foodborne illness, promoting a hazard analysis-based approach to food safety management and providing guidance for producers, retailers, caterers and the general public. It also deals with microbiological food hazards and outbreaks of foodborne disease.
Animal diseases
This section includes information about BSE (mad cow disease) and atypical scrapie as well as the updates issued during outbreaks of avian influenza (bird flu), foot and mouth, and bluetongue. The Food Standards Agency is responsible for ensuring that animal diseases do not pose a risk to food safety. Defra is the lead Government department for animal diseases and animal welfare. Read more
Radiological safety
 Radioactivity has been around since the earth was created and it exists naturally in the atmosphere, soil, seas and rivers. It's also created by human activity during energy production and military operations. Inevitably some of this gets into the food we eat.
Radioactivity is invisible, tasteless and not mentioned on food labels. But levels in food are strictly monitored and controlled. Read more
Allergy and intolerance
This section gives information on the Food Standards Agency's work on food allergy and intolerance, including research, labelling, advice to caterers and guidance notes.
The Food Standards Agency's approach to food allergy and intolerance has three main aims:
 
  • to fund research that will help increase our knowledge and understanding of food allergy and intolerance
  • strengthen food labelling rules to help people who need to avoid certain ingredients
  • help raise awareness of food allergy and intolerance among caterers
 
Hygiene resources
Resources to help you keep food safe and avoid food poisoning, whether in your business or at home.
Food Safety and Hygiene
Every year millions of people suffer from the effects of food poisoning bacteria, with symptoms such as diarrhoea, nausea and vomiting and stomach cramps. Many of these people will have eaten food which has been contaminated by poor food hygiene practices during preparation, storage or cooking. Some of these people may die.
If you operate a food business, the importance of good hygiene practices and procedures should not be underestimated. Employers have a legal obligation to comply with the stringent rules of the Food Safety Act 1990 and the various Food Hygiene Regulations and it is these systems that are fundamental to a "due diligence" defence. Failure to comply with these regulations can carry heavy penalties for catering companies in the way of fines, poor staff morale, loss of business and a bad reputation and possibly even imprisonment
On 1st January 2006 new food hygiene laws came into effect. The regulations require food business to implement and maintain food safety management procedures based on HACCP principles (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points).
HACCP focuses on identifying the critical control points in a process where food safety problems (or hazards) could arise and puts steps into place to prevent things from going wrong. keeping records is also an important part of a HACCP system.