MEMORANDA LAID BEFORE THE FOOD STANDARDS
Submitted by the Joint Food Safety and
APPLICATION OF THE FOOD PREMISES (REGISTRATION)
REGULATIONS 1991 TO MARKET STALLS AND MOBILE FOOD PREMISES
Schedule 1 to the Regulations set out the requirements
in respect of market stalls. These are:
Where a market stall is provided
by the controller of the market, and used within the market, it
is the controller who must register. (The controller must register
the whole market and the stall is included in that registration.)
The person using the stall does not have to register separately.
If a trader uses, within a market,
any (moveable) stall other than one provided by the controller
of the market, the trader must register the stall at the place
where it is normally kept, whether this is a warehouse, private
home, or anywhere else. A trader is not required to notify each
local authority covering the area of the market(s) where he/she
operates. A trader using a fixed stall at a market must register
it there. The market controller should also register the whole
Mobile food premises
Schedule 3 to the Regulations sets out the requirements
in respect of all mobile food premises other than market stalls,
including burger vans, ice cream sellers, and so on.
Mobile premises used in connection
with a food business operating from permanent premises must be
registered as part of that businessfor example a baker
running a number of delivery vans from a bakery must register
the bakery, and use the registration form to notify the local
authority of the number of delivery vans used.
Mobile premises not used in
connection with a food business operating from permanent premises
must be registered where they are usually kept, whether this is
a warehouse, private house or anywhere else. The number of vehicles
used by each business must be notified to the local authority
on the registration form. Burger or hot dog vans are examples
of this kind of operation. Traders using such mobile premises
are not required to notify each local authority where they ply
Water is included in the definition of "food"
in Part I of the Food Safety Act 1990. Regulatory controls under
that Act do not apply to the general supply of tap water (see
sections 55 and 56 of the FSA 1990). The Agency's major interest
in tap water will thus concern water used in food production,
for example by food manufacturers/processors or in restaurants.
Broad responsibility for the supply of wholesome waste water will
remain the responsibility of the Department of the Environment,
Transport and the Regions, and its opposite numbers in Scotland,
Wales and Northern ireland. Legal requirements in respect of drinking
water are set in the Water Industry Act 1991, the Water (Scotland)
Act 1980 and the Water and Sewerage Services (Northern Ireland)
Order 1973, as amended, and will continue to be enforced by the
Drinking Water Inspectorate in England and Wales and their equivalents
in Scotland and Northern Ireland. This legislation is based on
the requirements of Council Directive 80/778/EEC relating to the
quality of water intended for human consumption.
The Agency will take responsibility for the
safety, composition and labelling of bottled water and natural
mineral water. These products are presently regulated by the Drinking
Water in Containers Regulations 1994 (made under the Food Safety
Act 1990), which implement EU Council Directive 80/778/EEC for
bottled water, and the Natural Mineral Waters Regulations 1985
which implement EU Council Directive 80/777/EEC relating to the
exploitation and marketing of natural mineral waters. However,
these will shortly be replaced by the Natural Mineral Water, Spring
Water and Bottled Drinking Water Regulations which are in draft
form. The new Regulations implement Council Directive 96/70/EC
which amends 80/777/EEC.
Food premises used only occasionally
Regulation 2 of the Registration regulations
specifically exempts from registration requirements all
food premises which operate for fewer than five days, in total,
in any consecutive five-week period. Thus premises which operate
on a weekly basis are subject to the registration requirements,
as are arrangements of a seasonal nature which operate for five
days or more over five weeks. This reflects the intention to identify
regular operators but to exclude premises operating occasionally
or on a one-off basis, for example at some sporting events.
THE CURRENT PESTICIDES REGULATORY PROCESS
The aims of the Pesticides Safety Directorate
protect the health of human beings,
creatures and plants;
safeguard the environment;
secure, safe, efficient and human
methods of pest control.
In order to achieve its aims, PSD works in close
collaboration with a number of other Government Departments and
Agencies (including Health, Environment, Transport and the Regions,
Scotland and Wales).
The Directorate provides support for two Committees
with which the Department of Health and the Joint Food Standards
and Safety Group (JFSSG) are closely involved:
The Advisory Committee on Pesticides
(ACP) is an independent Committee providing advice to Ministers
in the regulatory Departments on the approval and review of pesticides.
The Working Party on Pesticide
Residues (WPPR) monitors both home-produced and imported food
for a wide range of pesticide residues.
In advising Ministers, the ACP evaluates
substantial data dossiers covering, amongst other things, safety
in use of a pesticide and residues.
Dossiers are scrutinised by independent
experts in areas such as medicine, environmental matters, clinical
toxicology and carcinogenicity.
The recommendations are considered
by five Departments.
All approved pesticides are subject
to routine review and to special review if circumstances require.
The WPPR (which is to be renamed the
Pesticides Residues Committee) undertakes on behalf of the Government
an annual residues surveillance programme.
All results are published on an annual
basis free of charge.
Monitoring is targeted to where residues
are most likely to be found.
Lay members have recently been appointed
to both the ACP and WPPR.
The national arrangements for authorising pesticides
are running in parallel to the emerging EU arrangements. The EU
systems of approvals and reviews will gradually replace the national
arrangements over a period of time.
PESTICIDE REGULATION: FUTURE LINKS WITH THE
FOOD STANDARDS AGENCY
The pesticides regulatory process is already
a joint effort with DH, DETR and the territorial Departments.
The Advisory Committee on Pesticides (ACP) has a central role
in offering advice to Ministers on the approval or revocation
The FSA will be closely involved with the ACP
the appointment of an expert member
nominated by the FSA;
the appointment of an assessor to
advise the Committee and to consider recommendations on behalf
of the Agency;
consultation on the appointment of
the Chairman and members.
It is proposed that pesticides residues surveillance
will remain with PSD. However, FSA will be fully involved in questions
of membership, the work programme and the reporting or results
of the Pesticides Residues Committee (PRC) (which will replace
the Working Party on Pesticide Residues).
Proposals currently under consideration for
the PRC envisage that:
The FSA will be involved in the appointment
of the Chairman and members of the PRC;
The FSA will attend meetings of the
PRC to act as advisers on the programme and its findings;
The FSA will be involved in the preparation
of the annual report and any special interim reports which the
PRC may publish.
The Food Standards Agency will also provide
a member for the ownership Board of the Pesticides Safety Directorate.
AUTHORISATION AND POLICY ON VETERINARY MEDICINES
The Licensing Authority for veterinary medicines
in the UK is the Health and Agriculture Ministers.
The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) is
responsible to the Licensing Authority for:
the regulation of veterinary medicines
and medicinal feed additives;
monitoring of suspected adverse reactions;
advice on veterinary medicine policy.
Independent expert advice to the Licensing Authority
on the safety, quality and efficacy of veterinary medicines and
on suspected adverse reactions is provided by the Veterinary Products
Two lay members with consumer expertise
sit on the VPC.
The draft Food Standards Bill provides for:
an expert member to be nominated
to the VPC by the Food Standards Agency (FSA);
FSA officials to advise the VPC on
issues related to food safety;
FSA to have the right to put its
own advice to Ministers if it does not consider the VPC's advice
properly reflects its concerns;
FSA to publish its advice if necessary.
See Annex 1 for diagrammatical description
of the authorisation process.
FSA will be consulted on all policy advice and
proposals for legislation which has food safety implications.
FSA will be consulted on all EU and other international
FSA will be able to put its own advice to Ministers
and publish it as necessary.
FSA will contribute to the production
of an annual report to the EU Commission and in drafting for publication
an annual report of the results from the surveillance programmes;
FSA may choose to conduct its own
See Annex 2 for a diagrammatical description
of the residues surveillance process.
The VMD is responsible to the Minister of Agriculture,
Fisheries and Food for surveillance of residues of veterinary
medicines in meat and animal products.
the statutory programme to meet EU
requirements involves testing of some 35,000 samples each year;
the non-statutory programme covers
some 1,500 substances and products not included in the statutory
programme on which almost 9,000 analyses are carried out;
results are published quarterly in
the Medicines Act Veterinary Information Service and in the Annual
Report on Residues Surveillance;
preliminary results for 1998 indicate
that 99.6 per cent of samples are free of detectable residues
of veterinary medicines.
Advice on the residues surveillance programme
currently provided by the Advisory Group on Veterinary Residues
(AGVR) which includes a consumer member.
Under proposed new arrangements:
FSA will be closely involved in the
appointment of members of an independent Veterinary Residues Committee
to replace the AGVR;
FSA will be closely involved in drafting
residues surveillance plans and submitting them to the VRC for
FSA will be consulted on the line
to be taken at EU meetings at which the UK's and other national
plans are approved by the EU Commission;
FSA will attend all meetings of the
VRC as advisers/assessors and provide, in particular, input into
the toxicological and other food safety implications of residues
detected by the surveillance programmes;
FSA will be involved in presentation
of results to the VRC and their quarterly publication in MAVIS,
including reporting to the VRC on the outcome of follow-up action
on samples containing residues;