Dr Linden Jack (Food Standards Agency (FSA)) - “The FSA and Shellfish”
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Dr Linden Jack (Food Standards Agency (FSA)) - “The FSA and Shellfish”







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Dr Linden Jack (Food Standards Agency (FSA)) - “The FSA and Shellfish” Dr Linden Jack (Food Standards Agency (FSA)) - “The FSA and Shellfish” Presentation Transcript

  • Shellfish and the FSALinden JackHead of Food Hygiene Policy TeamHygiene and Microbiology DivisionFood Standards Agency, UK
  • Shellfish and the FSA• Algal Toxins Testing – MBA – ASP in scallops• Cadmium in Crab• Norovirus – Foodbourne Disease Strategy – EFSA opinions• Classification review• EU activities – Equivalency with the US – FVO Audit – LBM requirements
  • Algal toxin testing – Mouse Bioassay• Completed long term objective to replace the MBA in UK shellfish monitoring programme with alternative chemical methods• Culmination of a long term FSA funded research programme• From 1 May all commercial species monitored using HPLC (PSP) or LC-MS (DSP)• HPLC was introduced for PSP testing in mussels (2008) cockles, razors and hard clams (2010) and remaining commercial species (2011)• LC-MS introduced for DSP testing 8 major species (July 2011) and remaining commercial species (May 2012)
  • Algal Toxins - ASP• Enforcement Authority and harvesters have requested clarification of legal requirements for testing scallops• Whole or shucked wild scallops can only be placed on the market if they meets the appropriate health standards (ASP <20mg domoic acid per kg)• Likely levels of ASP in whole scallops will have a major impact on sales.• EU legislation agreed in 2002 provision for higher level in whole animal if FBOs can demonstrate levels in edible parts meet standard. Not implemented in the UK.• Reviewing position to see if there is a practical and proportionate solution.• Consider potential risks e.g. Cross contamination during shucking and use ‘inedible’ parts
  • Cadmium in Crab• No plans to introduce a limit for Cadmium in brown crab meat or prohibit sale• EU Commission issued an information note and recommended MS provide consumption advice to limit exposure• Data supplied by industry and in the literature insufficient for a robust risk assessment• FSA funding a ‘snapshot’ survey to ensure consumption advice is based on current and robust evidence• Around 300 samples brown crab meat and brown crab meat products during summer 2012• Aim to issue advice by November 2012• Will be an opportunity for industry to comment on advice before publication
  • Norovirus• Work on norovirus is co-ordinated under the Agency’s Foodborne Disease Strategy• Expecting to establish 3 work streams: – Food handlers – Fresh produce – Shellfish• Require more robust and scientific knowledge on norovirus – Literature review on distinguishing infectious and non infectious norovirus – EU project (VITAL) on identifying routes of contamination and potential controls for all foods – Study on contribution of the whole food chain, including food handlers on UK acquired norovirus infections (3 yr project due to start during 2012) – Transmission routes of norovirus infection (complete 12/13) – Research call issued for literature review on survival and persistence of norovirus in foods and on food contact surfaces (complete early 13/14)• Research workshop in late 2012
  • Norvirus - Shellfish• Published research on prevalence of Norovirus in UK shellfish harvesting areas• Need to understand more about the levels of norovirus in shellfish when they reach the consumer, infectious dose and quantifying the effectiveness of depuration• Learn more about the active management programmes developed by harvesters• Consider recommendations from the EFSA opinions on foodborne viruses and norovirus in shellfish
  • Norovirus – EFSA recommendations (Foodborne viruses)• Focus on prevention rather than removal of contamination• Microbiological criteria for classification of harvesting areas and end product for high risk bivalve molluscs (to be consumed raw)• Prohibition zones around sewage discharges• more stringent E.coli criteria for class B harvesting areas• Use of pollution alert procedures• Post harvest treatments validated• Further training of food handlers specifically focussing on viruses to reduce risk of contamination of ready-to-eat foods Several UK partners already working together to address these recommendations e.g. defra, FSA, Seafish, water companies, harvesters
  • Norovirus – EFSA recommendations (Norovirus in Oysters)• Controls should focus on avoiding contamination either by preventing contamination of production areas or restricting harvesting from contaminated areas• Establish an acceptable limit for norovirus in oysters and testing to verify compliance should be considered• Harvesters should consider incorporating Norovirus testing within HACCP plans• Further information needed on levels of norovirus in production areas and batches to develop risk based sampling strategies• EU baseline survey of norovirus contamination in oysters• Further research needed to establish relationship between norovirus levels (PCR) and impact on human health and to optimise effectiveness depuration and relaying Again work already underway, particularly by harvesters developing their own risk management strategies and acceptable working limits for NoV
  • Classification review• New species and beds in existing production areas are classified more quickly (completed In Jan 2011)• Protocol for use of harvesters own results due to be finalised by end of May. Initiate a 12 month pilot .• Commission research(12/13) to investigate the potential of use indicator shellfish species to classify shellfish production areas.• Development of sanitary surveys as an active management some initial work done and will be taken forward 12/13.• Delays associated with completion of sanitary surveys – will be taken forward 12/13• Developing policy on handling of high results – work has started and expect to be completed this year. Had major plans to develop classification process and will continue this work. Developments at EU level have had a significant impact on work but also provided clarification on a number of issues
  • EU activities – Exports to the US• Working with Commission and other Member States to establish equivalency agreement for trade in LBM between EU and US• Major project with wider implications for trade.• US audit (partial) of UK April 2011• Shift in emphasis to approve individual production areas in MS wishing to export to US as interim approach as work towards equivalency.• Limited interest from specific harvesters• Nominated Class A areas with sanitary surveys to support process which may facilitate future exports.
  • EU activities – FVO audit• FVO inspectors audited UK in April 12• Audit generally satisfactory but identified some issues, several of which we are already addressing• Initial indication that audit report will seek further information on – Registration and approval establishments – Actions taken when results exceed classification criteria – Minor issue re sampling – Biotoxin monitoring – Notification of results – FBOs EPT and record keeping
  • EU activities – LBM requirements• EU WG on LBMs established and met January and March 12.• Small number of MS with specific interest in shellfish issues working to develop proposals for wider discussion. UK one of main contributors.Issues under discussion• EU guidelines on sanitary surveys• Revision of criteria for Class A harvesting areas and end product microbiological criteria so they are consistent with Codex guidelines• Norovirus
  • Thank you for listeningAny Questions?