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Food Safety Logic Blog / Knowledge Hub
Here you’ll find useful information, news items and articles relating to Food Safety.
Allergen rules are changing on 1st October 2021 – is your business ready?
The Food Information Regulations were updated in 2019 with specific rules about Pre-Packed for Direct Sale [PPDS] food. This followed the tragic death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse who died from eating a baguette with sesame seeds that she was allergic too.
At the time allergens were not identified on a label on the food. Natasha’s parents have campaigned tirelessly since her death to get the law changed, and this update has aptly been named ‘Natasha’s Law’.
As the so called ‘Freedom Day’ being the 19th July 2021 approaches, events are popping up all over the country, including post-poned festivals and music events.
Often these events are organised at short notice as restrictions are lifted and it’s a mad scramble to get every thing in place.
If you are an event organiser or planner you will have a list as long as your arm (and longer) to do. This should include making sure that any food businesses serving food at your event are safe and legal.
It seems everything is now available online or on an app including food safety paperwork. Last week at the Highfield online conference, Andy Kerridge from Wyvern Food Solutions Ltd. discussed the ‘Future of Remote auditing and other Emerging Technologies’ . He discussed what food safety auditing and management systems might look like in the near and distant future. He highlighted how automation and robotics is being used to problem solve in manufacturing settings to do repetitive tasks. And how robots could interact with humans – very thought provoking stuff.
Are you wondering when your next food hygiene rating visit will take place?
Unfortunately the Covid epidemic has severely disrupted food hygiene inspections. Local Authorities have been following the Food Standards Agency advice and suspended routine food inspections, visiting only high risk or Category A businesses. Environmental health teams are now playing catch up, following the recent lift in Covid restrictions, to try and get through the back log.
Hospitality is gearing up to fully re-open as of Monday 17th May 2021. For many of these businesses it is the first time their doors will have been open for quite a while. Particularly if they have been unable to offer takeaway or deliveries or don’t have an outside eating area. There is a definite buzz about being able to eat out again without having to wear a big winter coat and boots just to keep warm!
The partial re-opening of hospitality has been particularly welcome for customers who love eating out (even if it has been a bit chilly!!). From 12th April only those businesses with outdoor eating areas have been allowed to re-open. This has meant that many food businesses have had to remain closed.
However the next Step in the Government’s road map, no doubt eagerly awaited by customers and businesses alike is that indoor hospitality will be opening from 17th May 2021. This is a major milestone in getting the hospitality sector back up and running.
Training your staff in Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point or HACCP is the best way to make sure that the food safety risks are managed in your food business every day. It will help your supervisors or mangers to develop and implement a catering food safety management system based on HACCP principles. And to understand the importance of control food safety hazards and making sure that if something goes wrong action is taken to correct it.
If you vacuum pack some of the food you produce to help with shelf life or quality you may not be aware that new guidance was published in December 2020 Safety and shelf life of Vacuum packed food 1990 (the guidance also covers modified atmosphere packing but is not discussed in this blog)
What is vacuum packing?
It is the removal of air using an air tight seal to prevent any air returning. Most bacteria require oxygen to grow but some don’t and these are the ones that you need to be aware of.
What’s all the fuss about?
If you are a food business that has recently re-opened following the lifting of Covid restrictions. There is no doubt you will have had a lot of things to think about including making sure the controls are in place to keep your customers safe. In my last 2 blogs I have highlighted things that have changed recently. These include the Test and Trace requirements and workplace COVID testing, for more information click here.