We – the Food Standards Agency, Food Standards Scotland and representatives of the meat industry across the UK – met to discuss concerns arising from the recent examples of non-compliance with food hygiene regulations identified at a small number of meat cutting plants.
The discussion was constructive and engaging with all in the meeting agreeing the need for close collaboration and co-operation between regulators and industry in responding to the issues raised by recent events.
As regulators and industry bodies we have a shared interest in making sure that consumer trust in the UK meat industry remains high. The food chain depends on trust and we want people to be confident that the meat they enjoy has been produced to the highest standards.
We recognise that some concerns have been uncovered by recent regulatory inspections. In most cases businesses involved have taken actions to demonstrate compliance and continue to trade normally. Where those concerns were serious enforcement procedures have been put in place.
We will continue to work together to support meat businesses in fully understanding what is expected of them in relation to current regulations and ensuring full and effective industry engagement with the forthcoming FSA/FSS review of cutting plants and cold stores.
- The meeting, between senior executives and non-executives of the FSA, FSS and senior representatives of meat industry trade bodies took place on Tuesday 20 February at the FSA headquarters in London. A list of the trade bodies represented at the meeting is attached at Annex A
- On 1 February, the FSA and FSS announced the intention to undertake a UK-wide review of meat cutting premises and cold-stores. Further details of the review will be published later this month and the results will be fully available to the public.
Meat industry trade bodies represented at the meeting:
- Association of Independent Meat Suppliers (AIMS)
- British Meat Processors Association (BMPA)
- British Poultry Council (BPC)
- Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW)
- Hampshire Game (HG)
- International Meat Trade Association (IMTA)
- National Association of Catering Butchers (NACB)
- National Federation of Meat & Food Traders (NFMFT)
- Northern Ireland Meat Exporters Association (NIMEA)
- Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers (SAMW)