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Food Safety

Volume 401: debated on Tuesday 18 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether she has appraised the testing methodology obliged in the Processed Animal Protein (England) Regulations 2001 against the currently best available methodologies for the same tasks. [102836]

The Processed Animal Protein (England) Regulations 2001, all except the international trade provisions of that legislation, were replaced by and incorporated into the TSE (England) Regulations 2002 on 19 April 2002.The development of effective detection methods to distinguish the species content of meal intended for feed is a priority for Defra. The Commission has indicated that they are prepared to re-consider the current ban on fishmeal in ruminant feed once such a test has been validated. Full validation of a new test technique, however, is likely to take some time to achieve. In addition to the on-going development work, there are assessments being made both in the European context and in the UK to examine the currently available technology. A paper summarising the current position was prepared by Defra for a recent meeting of the Advisory Committee on Animal Feedingstuffs, and can be found at: http://www.foodstandards.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/acaf0237.pdf

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether she has appraised the testing methodology obliged in the Animal By-Products Order 1999 against the currently best available methodologies for the same tasks. [102837]

Testing under the Animal By-Products Order 1999 may be carried out under the methodology set out in the Order, or by a method which conforms with the relevant British or International Standards.