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Food: Testing

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 25th March 2020.

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Photo of Rebecca Long-Bailey Rebecca Long-Bailey Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of reinstating support to local authorities for food sampling.

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is the central competent authority for food safety and has a statutory function to protect health and consumers interests for food and drink. Local authorities are responsible for the day to day delivery of controls and to carry out appropriate enforcement activity. Food sampling is just one of a wide range of different approaches that local authorities use to ensure compliance. It is the local authorities responsibility to ensure that appropriate resources are allocated to deliver these controls.

The FSA recognises the essential role of sampling in maintaining food standards and providing confidence in the food we eat. As part of this, the FSA is developing a sampling strategy, creating an intelligence led approach to delivering sampling to ensure it is effectively targeted to safeguard public health.

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