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The Food Standards Agency… in bite-sized chunks

What will the Food Standards Agency do? It will aim to protect public health in relation to food. This means that it will act as an advisory body for the Government, the public, and anyone who produces or sells food.

Why do we need a Food Standards Agency? Doesn’t the Department of Health and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food already do its job? A year ago, Jack Straw released a White Paper that Ap Lei Chau Prada Factory Outlet established the need for an agency to deal with food safety-related issues. Because MAFF has an obvious interest in protecting the British beef industry, the Ministry Baby Prada Shoes Uk was liable to be accused of trying to play down the scale of the BSE problem. The Department of Health had a role to play in advising the public on how best to avoid food poisoning, for example, but has no mandate to monitor food production. The Government hopes the Agency will fulfil both roles and satisfy consumer concerns about safety.

When will the Food Standards Agency come into being? It is expected to open by the end of 1999.

Will it be an independent body? Yes. Government ministers will only intervene in the Agency’s activities if they deem it to have infringed the Guiding Principles. The FSA will be free to publish the advice it gives to Ministers and it will operate ‘at arm’s length’ from the Government.

How much power will the FSA have? Although the Agency’s Authentic Prada Gauffre main function will be advisory, the Authentic Prada Bag For Sale Philippines draft bill outlines a number of other powers. It will fund research into food safety, set the standards for local authority law enforcement (such as environmental health inspections), and monitor standards at any level of the food chain, from pesticide residues in vegetables to Authentic Prada Clothing the Authentic Prada Bags For Cheap metal contamination of tinned food.

How will it be funded? The Agriculture Minister, Nick Brown replica prada messenger bags, says that most of the Agency’s costs will come from public funds. However, each food shop (or branch of a chain) will Authentic Prada Outlet Online Uk have to pay an annual levy of £90 to fund the extra costs of setting up the Agency. Small retailers have attacked this decision Authentic Prada Canvas Bag as unfair to smaller shops that already struggle to Black Prada Doctor Bag make a profit, but the main supermarkets have endorsed the move.

Will all shops selling food have to pay the levy? Most of them. Any retailers who are currently exempt from the Food Premises (Registrations) Regulations 1991 will not have to pay. Over half a million businesses and premises are liable.

How will we judge its effectiveness?

The Agency’s handling of food scandals, particularly BSE, will give a good idea of its effectiveness. Much depends on whether Ministers choose to follow its recommendations. The Agency will also hope to reverse the upward trend in food poisoning cases – a leaked Government report last year claimed that a sixth of the British population had suffered from food poisoning during the previous year.

What will happen to environmental health inspectors? The Agency will collaborate Agatha Ruiz Dela Prada E Shop with local environmental health officers and help to establish their standards.

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