NIFA announces US$10million grant investment in food safety, FSMA related projects

U.S – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) has announced an investment of US$10 million for 21 grants to device and execute food safety and Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)-related training, education, extension outreach and technical assistance for food processors and farmers with small to mid-size operations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports 48 million people in the US get sick from foodborne illness each year.  The NIFA Director, Dr. Carrie Castille stated that education and outreach are essential for…

READ MORE

NAFDAC brings bakeries operations to a halt for flouting hygiene regulations

NIGERIA – The National Agency for Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has closed down six bakeries for not adhering to good hygiene. The state Coordinator of NAFDAC, Mr. Nasiru Mato, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) disclosed that most of the bakeries did not meet the minimum requirements to operate while others were not registered with the agency. “NAFDAC in Kaduna has embarked on massive surveillance on bakeries in the state as part of efforts to ensure strict compliance to standards. The focus of the…

READ MORE

CMX teams up with Mojix to debut open data access food traceability platform

U.S – CMX, a leading provider of cloud-based Enterprise Quality Management Software (EQMS), has partnered with Mojix, a global leader in item-level intelligence solutions, to launch the first open data access, item-level food traceability platform. As part of the agreement, CMX will integrate the Mojix ytem platform, an innovation that emerged top in the  U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recent traceability challenge,  with the CMX1 platform, used by leading brands worldwide. The integration gives CMX customers access to lightning-fast item-level traceability and visibility into inventory and item lifecycle across…

READ MORE

FSAI urges regular fact-checking of breakfast cereal nutrition labels to ascertain credibility

IRELAND – The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has revealed that consumers cannot be dependent on breakfast cereal nutrition labels to indicate true food composition and should be regularly verified. The report was carried out to assess the use of nutrition labels on breakfast cereals to see whether they can be relied upon to monitor food reformulation of food sold on the Irish market. Food reformulation is when producers reduce ingredients such as fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt in processed and packaged food in order to improve its…

READ MORE

US congressional subcommittee faults baby food manufacturers over heavy metals presence in products

U.S – A new US House Oversight subcommittee probe has unveiled that several leading baby food makers haven’t done enough to screen for neurotoxic heavy metals like arsenic, lead and cadmium in their products. The report follows up on an investigation from the same panel earlier this year, which found concerning levels of heavy metal contamination across many popular baby and children’s food products on the market, from rice puffs to infant cereals and purees — findings that enraged parents and put pressure on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)…

READ MORE

Researchers identify spoilage microorganisms in apple juice enabling better control

U.S – Researchers at the Cornell University have identified three new bacteria species present in apple juice, one of which leads to spoilage-a step which will help manufacturers tweak control strategies. The three new species-Alicyclobacillus mali, A. fructus, and A. suci-all belong to the genus Alicyclobacillus. A. suci was found to produce a compound called guaiacol, which is known in other Alicyclobacillus species to create a medicinal, smoky or rubber-like flavor in shelf-stable apple juice. While Alicyclobacillus bacteria can affect juice quality and lead to spoilage, they are not a…

READ MORE

TASAI reveals a decline in counterfeit seeds cases

KENYA – The African Seed Access Index (TASAI), a tool that monitors indicators that are essential to seed sector development at national level, has depicted that Kenya’s efforts towards eradicating the sale of counterfeit seeds are bearing fruit, thanks to use of verification sticker labels. The Seeds and Plant Varieties (Seeds) Regulations (MALFC, 2016b) make it mandatory for all certified seeds sold in packets of 5 kilos and below to have a verification sticker label affixed to the seed packets. Subsequent to buying seeds, farmers can scratch labels on the…

READ MORE

Kenya to resume mango export to Italy after passing safety tests

KENYA – Kenyan mangoes have received a nod to resume the mango export business to Italy following a 7 year ban due to the fruit fly menace that led to product interceptions. According to Kenya’s Health Inspection Service (Kephis), a few tons of mangoes were sent to Italy on trial after the country rectified the problems that led to the ban. The self-imposed ban made Kenyan growers dependent on a less lucrative Middle Eastern market. The Kenyan government has however since then come up with a hot water treatment technology…

READ MORE

SAC to develop new accreditation to certify production of pesticide-free vegetables

SINGAPORE – The Singapore Accreditation Council (SAC), is developing a new accreditation programme to certify farms in Singapore that meet the national guidelines of producing pesticide-free and sustainably-grown vegetables. The new programme which Enterprise Singapore (ESG), a government agency championing for enterprise development, oversees together with the Singapore Food Agency (SFA), will ensure that independent certification bodies can competently assess and recognize such clean and green farms. The guidelines to ensure produce from local vegetable farms are grown sustainably and free from pesticides, known as the “Singapore Standard (SS) 661:…

READ MORE

NAFDAC cautions bakers on use of potassium bromate to enhance bread

NIGERIA – The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), has cautioned bakers in the country to desist from using potassium bromate to enhance bread properties as it has grave health consequences. Prof. Mojisola Christianah Adeyeye, the NAFDAC Director General, made the appeal at a sensitization campaign in Agulu, Anambra State. Represented by the Director of Chemical Evaluation and Research, Pharmacist Mrs. Ngozi Onuorah, Prof Adeyeye warned that potassium bromate is a silent killer, hence, should not be used for human consumption. “The use of Potassium bromate…

READ MORE