Food Law

Food Law. There is a substantial amount of legislation, codes of practice and guidance documents that regulate food handling in the United Kingdom. These cover all parts of the food production and distribution chain, including:

  • Production
  • Processing
  • Packaging and Labelling
  • Importing
  • Distribution
  • Retailing and Catering

The Food Safety Act.
This Act gives the Food Standards Agency (FSA) its functions and powers.

The FSA aims to protect public health and consumers’ interests, while also making sure food business operators are not burdened by excessive or unclear regulations.

General Food Law.
The main pieces of UK and European general food legislation are:

  • The Food Safety (Northern Ireland) Order 1991, which provides the framework for food legislation in Northern Ireland and creates offences concerning safety, quality and labelling
  • The Food Law Regulation (EC) No 178/2002, which creates general principles and requirements of food law
  • The Food Hygiene Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006, which provide for the enforcement – including penalties – of certain provisions of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 and amend the Food Safety (Northern Ireland) Order 1991 to bring it in line with this regulation
  • The European Communities Act 1972, under which European food law is transposed into national legislation
  • Regulation (EC) No 183/2005 on feed hygiene which introduces hygiene requirements for those food businesses placing food materials into animal feed

The main responsibilities of food business operators  are:

  • To ensure that you do not include anything in food, remove anything from food, or treat food in any way which means it would be damaging to the health of people eating it
  • To ensure that the food you serve or sell is of the nature, substance or quality consumers would expect
  • To ensure that food is labelled, advertised and presented in a way that is not false or misleading.

The Level 2 Food Safety and Hygiene for Catering course deals in brief with many of the food regulations which concern food handlers.

Food Law
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