New food safety guidance announced

Date:

Media contact: MPI media team

Telephone: 029 894 0328

Email: media@mpi.govt.nz

The Ministry for Primary Industries today announced food safety guidance which will cover up to 16,000 food businesses across New Zealand.

This means that all types of food businesses in New Zealand now have easy-to-follow guidance for keeping food safe. Different types of businesses have different guidance depending on the food safety risk of the food they handle.

The new national programme guidance covers businesses with medium to low risk food safety issues. Because of the lower risk, the compliance costs are also less than for businesses with more complex food safety risks.

"In 2016, 60% of reported cases where food made people sick, came from commercial food operators," MPI Director Peter Thomson says.

"These guides help a wide range of food businesses from dairies to juice and confectionery manufacturers to keep their food safe for consumers. The numbers of Kiwis getting sick from food-related bugs needs to come down. We also need to protect groups like small children, the frail elderly, and people with compromised immune systems.

"While food poisoning for a normal heathy person can be a short-lived upset stomach, the recent case of suspected botulism in the Waikato, or the campylobacter in the Havelock North drinking water, show how harmful bugs can have severe consequences.

"A consistent set of rules targeting top food safety problems that are flexible and easy for businesses to apply, are the best way to make sure that Kiwis safely enjoy our great food culture." Peter Thomson says.  

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