Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) calls for submissions on plans to review existing limits for Listeria monocytogenes
in ready to eat foods.
The body said the reason for the proposal was due to the microbiological limits set in Standard 1.6.1 were established more than ten years ago by the code in December 2000.
The limit generally specified is "not detected in 25g" and for read-to-eat products, a limit of 100 cfu per 25 g is allowed in one out of five samples. An amendment to Standard 1.6.1 is required to change the regulatory limits for L. monocytogenes
in RTE foods, said FSANZ.
Steve McCutcheon, FSANZ chief executive officer, said that since limits were first set, preventative food safety requirements and new limits had been established internationally. The review of the limits for L. monocytogenes
is the first stage of a broader review of the code.
Three options are being considered:
- to include limits in Standard 1.6.1 for L.monocytogenes on the basis of whether the food is ready-to-eat and can or cannot support its growth.
- to delete the limits for L. monocytogenes in Standard 1.6.1 and establish reference criteria for L. monocytogenes in ready-to-eat food on the basis of whether it can or cannot support its growth.
- make no amendments to the limits in Standard 1.6.1 (status quo).
The closing date for submissions on Proposal P1017 is 16 November.
Source: Food Standards Australia New Zealand