SGS Announces Publication of EU’s Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) 2014 Results
The Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) preliminary annual report 2014 not only includes the market surveillance activities connected to food and feedstuff but for food contact materials (FCM) as well. The total notifications connected to FCM have decreased by 15% compared to the previous year. However, notifications for FCM still make it to the top 10 of all product category findings by EU Member State authorities in 2014.
The criteria for notification to the RASFF (http://ec.europa.eu/food/safety/rasff/index_en.htm) are provided in Article 50 of European Commission Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 (http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2002:031:0001:0024:EN:PDF). Whenever a member of the network has any information relating to the existence of a serious direct or indirect risk to human health deriving from food or feed, this information is immediately reported to the Commission under the RASFF. The Commission immediately transmits the information to the members of the network.
Food Contact Materials (FCM) Included in Report
In the preliminary 2014 report (http://ec.europa.eu/food/safety/rasff/docs/rasff_preliminary_annual_report_2014_en.pdf), a total of 3157 (vs. 3205 in previous year) original notifications were transmitted through the RASFF, and 185 (vs. 218 in previous year) are connected to FCM. This represents 5.9% of all reported incidents in 2014. The percentage of FCM notifications is again slightly lower than previous years and is a confirmation of the positive trend, as the FCM related notifications accounted for 6.8% of all findings in 2013, 8.2% in 2012 and 8.4% in 2011.
The most frequent findings for FCM are connected to release of heavy metals. Release of chromium and manganese are of particular concern, repeating the findings in 2013. Both parameters together account for 34.1% of all FCM notifications in 2014 - ranking fourth and eighth, respectively, in the top 10 of the RASFF report. It has been reported that the country of origin of the concerned products is China in both cases. Nickel release also contributed significantly to the notifications. Including it in the statistics of heavy metal release related notifications it totals 42.9% of all FCM related findings. The most active EU Member State for surveillance of FCM in 2014 has again been Italy. The top 10 RASSF notifications in 2014 by country of origin are listed in a table within the latest SGS Safeguards bulletin (http://newsletter.sgs.com/eNewsletterPro/uploadedimages/000006/SGS-Safeguards-08515-EU%E2%80%932014-market-surveillance-report-food-contact-materials-published-A4-EN-15.pdf).
About SGS Hardgoods Safety Services
SGS technical experts have extensive knowledge and testing experience in materials and articles in contact with food (http://www.sgs.com/en/Consumer-Goods-Retail/Hardgoods/Home-Furnishings-and-Houseware/Testing/Food-Contact-Tests.aspx). They work to ensure that products meet the appropriate regulations for food contact materials and pave the way for compliance. From overall migration tests to expert advice on emerging regulations and compliance issues and documentation review, SGS is the partner to trust. Please do not hesitate to contact an SGS representative for further information or visit the SGS website.
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Dr. Udo Krischke
+49 (0)6128 - 744 235
SGS Germany GmbH
Im Maisel 14