The Food Standards Agency’s (FSA’s) Nina Purcell will provide an update on her organisation’s plans to reform food safety regulation, as part of its Regulating Our Future (ROF) programme.
As the senior officer responsible for the delivering the programme, Purcell will explain how manufacturers will be expected to share both private third-party audit findings and specialist food safety inspection skills with the FSA.
It will be in advance of the launch of the agency’s online registration system for food and drink firms, which is expected to go live this summer.
ROF was a hotly-contested topic at last year’s Food Safety Conference, with critics arguing that the reforms were a move to industry self-regulation. Other businesses have voiced concerns that sharing valuable data with the FSA carried considerable commercial implications.
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At last year’s conference, former FSA head of local authority enforcement John Barnes said ROF was aimed at making food safety regulation fit for purpose, and would help to protect the industry against global risks and threats.
In this exclusive video interview, filmed at the conference, Barnes said: “The benefits for manufacturers is that to some extent, that they have more control over their destiny. If there’s sharing of data, then there’s a lot more protection in a co-regulated model for the industry in general.”
The industry needed to make sure it had a strong and mature food safety control system, that properly acknowledged the investment and expertise that the sector had, Barnes said. The Regulating our Future programme would do that, he added.
A focus on future law and threats
Entitled ‘A focus on future law and threats’, this year’s all-day Food Safety Conference will be held at Etc.venues, Maple House, Birmingham, on Thursday 21 June.
It is sponsored by AIB International, Pal International, and Westgate Factory Dividers.
Other speakers include: Andy Morling, head of food crime at the National Food Crime Unit; Dawn Welham, president of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health; and Sue Davies, strategic policy adviser at Which?.
The event will be chaired by Campden BRI director general, Professor Steven Walker.