Canada issues recommendations to enhance Food Safety

by Editor
Thursday, June 25, 2009

A comprehensive analysis by the Canadian Parliament's Food Safety Subcommittee following last summer's listeriosis outbreak contains more than a dozen areas for improvement.
The are including the implementation of food safety programs such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP), traceability, a collaborative effort with the U.S. to develop a common approach to food safety standards, an enhanced foodborne illness surveillance system, better inter-agency protocols and increased inspection resources.

The report, entitled "Beyond the Listeriosis Crisis: Strengthening the Food Safety System," was compiled after a series of public hearings between April and June 2009 on a number of issues related to food safety and the role that industry and the government need to play in ensuring the safety of the food supply.   

The hearings included testimony from various members of the Canadian government, producers, processors and other members of Canada's food supply chain, as well as testimony from James H. Hodges, executive vice president of the American Meat Institute. 

Hodges pointed out that the meat and poultry industry has been a strong advocate of a preventative approach and in fact petitioned the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to mandate HACCP plans in meat and poultry plants. That requirement took effect a decade ago and has helped enhance meat and poultry safety.