Regeneration Portfolio Environmental Health and Trading Standards Divisions Food and Animal Feed Sampling Policy LIVERPOOL FOOD AND FEED SAMPLING POLICY 1 Introduction 1.1 The surveillance of the marketplace through product sampling and test purchases of goods, including food and feed, is an integral part of enforcement activity. This document details the Authority’s Food and Animal Feed Sampling Policy setting out the general approach to sampling. The policy is published on the web site at www.liverpool.gov.uk/Business/Trading_standards/standards/index.asp and www.liverpool.gov.uk/Environment/Food_quality_and_production/Inspections/in dex.asp 2 Sampling Programme 2.1 Each year a food standards and animal feed sampling programme is developed by Trading Standards and a food safety sampling programme is developed by Environmental Health. The rationale behind each programme is to check the following areas: To ensure the quality and safety of food and feed - including food and feed imported from third countries. To check the validity of process monitoring and management systems in relation to the importation, manufacture or sale of food and feed within the City – including those for which the Authority acts as the Originating Authority or Home Authority. To establish compliance against relevant compositional standards or specific labelling requirements. To check the accuracy and validity of descriptions and statements which are applied to the food or feed. To check the accuracy and validity of claims relating to properties, additives and ingredients in food and feed. To address both local and national food concerns and those relating to animal feed. To participate in regional and national sampling programmes and initiatives. To act as an educative tool to help inform businesses and the public regarding food issues. 2.2 The proposed Sampling Programme for the year, in each case, will be developed and implemented having regard to the potential risk posed by the foods and animal feeds. It will also have regard to the number, type, risk rating and the confidence in the management systems in operation at food and feed premises within the City. Consultation will take place with the Public Analyst or Food Examiner as appropriate. 2.3 The Sampling Programme, in each case, allows sufficient flexibility to enable officers to respond to local needs or complaints as they arise, and for officer initiatives. It also allows sufficient flexibility for officers to undertake sampling to Regeneration Portfolio Environmental Health and Trading Standards Divisions act as supporting evidence in the enforcement of food standards, animal feed and food safety investigations where appropriate. 2.4 When officers take or procure samples for analysis or examination they will have due regard to relevant work procedures and to the procedural and legislative requirements detailed in: the relevant legislation, the Food Law Code of Practice. the Feed Law Enforcement Code of Practice Guidance issued by Local Government Co-ordinators of Regulatory Service Guidance issued by Food Standards Agency. 2.5 The circumstances will determine if the samples taken will be ‘formal’ which can give rise to formal enforcement action -if appropriate or ‘informal’ which can only be used as the basis for considering what further action –if any- needs to be taken in respect of the sample in question. 2.6 All action taken in response to samples found to be incorrect will be proportionate to the nature of the illegality and will fully comply with the City Council’s Enforcement Policy. 3 Analysis and Examination 3.1 All samples of food and animal feed are submitted to Eurofins Scientific, who act as the Authority’s Public and Agricultural Analysts. Samples for examination will be submitted to the Chester Microbiology Services- Food and Environmental Microbiology Services North West (FEMSNW), the authorities Public Examiner.