The Newsletter of the Food Regulation Secretariat - Issue 7 Feb 2008

An initiative of the Australian Federal, State and Territory and New Zealand Governments

Page last updated: 08 October 2013

PDF printable version of the Newsletter of the Food Regulation Secretariat - Issue 7 February 2008 (PDF 55 KB)
Issue 7 February 2008
ISBN: 0 642 82515 7

Current projects and reviews

Food Safety Risk Profiling Framework

In December 2002, FRSC agreed that food safety management should be based on risk profiling where the level of legislative requirements, and the verification of those legislative requirements, is commensurate with risk.

This was ratified in December 2003 by the Ministerial Policy Guidelines on Food Safety Management in Australia: Food Safety Programs which included these policy principles:
  • that regulations covering food safety management in Australia be based on risk, where the level of legislative requirements and their verification is commensurate with the level of risk; and
  • that risk profiling be used to classify food businesses or food industry sectors in Australia on the basis of risk.

The Risk Profiling Framework was endorsed by the Food Regulation Standing Committee (FRSC) at the March 2007 meeting. A Task Group of the FRSC Food Safety Management Working Group is undertaking further work to develop a list of key food business sectors and to scope the extent of work that would be required to assign risk priority classifications to those sectors.

The Framework is designed to help to assess risk associated with products and process, and is both transparent and scientifically based. The Framework is not intended for general use by local government or by individual food businesses. It is designed to be used by regulators as a high level priority setting tool. Risk management options are being assessed by the Implementation Sub Committee (ISC).Top of page

Gazettal of Australian and New Zealand Folic Acid Standards

The Australian Standard for mandatory fortification of food with folic acid appeared in the Commonwealth of Australia Gazette on 13 September 2007 (Amendment No. 93 – 2007, Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code). This Standard requires the mandatory fortification of wheat flour for making bread with folate. Under this Standard wheat flour for making bread must contain no less than 2mg/kg and no more than 3mg/kg of folic acid in Australia.

The New Zealand Standard for the mandatory fortification of bread with folic acid appeared in the New Zealand Gazette on 27 September 2007 (Notice No.14 – 2007). This Standard requires the mandatory fortification of bread with folic acid, with bread to contain no less than 0.8mg/kg and no more than 1.8 mg/kg of folic acid.

Both the Australian and New Zealand Standards come into full effect 24 months after gazettal which will be in September 2009.

Monitoring Framework for Iodine and Folic Acid

On 4 October 2007, the Australian Health Minister’s Advisory Council (AHMAC) endorsed the Monitoring Frameworks for Mandatory Fortification of Food with Folic Acid and Iodine.

It has been agreed that the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) will have responsibility for conducting the relevant monitoring and evaluation activities outlined in the Framework. Initially, the AIHW will conduct a gap analysis and prepare a baseline data report to identify where further data needs to be collected.

The AIHW is collaborating with relevant experts in the field to ensure consistency in data collection across the Australian and New Zealand populations. In the longer term the monitoring framework will assist in assessing the adequacy of folic acid and iodine across both populations.

Publication of request for review of a draft standard or a draft variation to the Australian and New Zealand Food Standards Code

In October 2007, the Ministerial Council endorsed the proposed protocol for the publication of details relating to a request for a review by the Ministerial Council of a draft standard or variation. The purpose of the protocol is to ensure a transparent process for the food standards setting. The publication of any request for a review by the Ministerial Council will be made available on the Food Regulation website.Top of page

Calendar dates for 2008

Please note: the following dates maybe subject to change
7th March – FRSC – Canberra
2nd & 3rd April - ISC - Brisbane
2nd – Ministerial Council - Melbourne
10th & 11th - ISC – Darwin
8th – FRSC – Brisbane
24th – Ministerial Council – Adelaide
6th & 7th – ISC – Sydney
28th – FRSC – Sydney

ISC – Implementation Sub Committee
FRSC – Food Regulation Standing Committee
Ministerial Council – Australia and New Zealand Food Regulation Ministerial CouncilTop of page

Completed policy guidelines

The following policy guidelines have been completed and are on the Food Regulation Secretariat website.
  • Fortification of Food with Vitamins and Minerals.
  • Nutrition, Health and Related Claims.
  • Food Safety Management in Australia: Food Safety Programs.
  • Country of Origin Labelling.
  • Novel Foods.
  • Addition of Caffeine to Foods.
  • Primary Production and Processing.
  • Policy principles for health and related claims in food labelling and advertising.
  • Regulation of Residues of Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals in Food.
  • National Food Safety Audit Policy.

For our stakeholders

Please let us know if your contact details have changed, or you know of anyone who might be interested in receiving the newsletter. Our contact details are:
Address: PO Box 4, Woden ACT 2606
Email: Food Regulation Secretariat
Phone: (02) 6289 5128
Fax: (02) 6289 5100
Website: Food Regulation SecretariatTop of page