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FOOD SAFETY OF THE SHORT SUPPLY CHAIN - Favv

FOOD SAFETY OF THE SHORT SUPPLY CHAIN - Favv

differentiation on good

differentiation on good quality and safety of these foods from short food supply chains as defined above and conventional ‘long’ food supply chain (Ibery and May, 2005). In the short food supply chain, the whole production from primary product till end product and distribution, is usually managed by the same person or the same team. Due to the broad range of tasks, specialization towards food safety management is mostly not possible. As a consequence, most short food supply chain operators or production units are struggling with the complexity of the food safety management rules. However, the peculiarity of the short food supply chain, often related to fresh foods or restricted in the number of processing and transaction steps and employees involved, facilitates efficient communication and control. As such there might be the option for simplified rules and control systems to be put in place. Furthermore guidance, training and networking for exchange of information provided by either public or private organizations to farmers or business in the short food supply chain may enhance the capacity to comply to the relevant food hygiene and other food safety regulations and demands for assuring safe and high quality foods to the consumer. REFERENCES Carey, L., Bell, P., Duff, A., Sheridan, M., Shields, M. 2011. Farmers’ Market consumers: a Scottisch perspective. International Journal of Consumer Studies 35 (3), 300‐306. Berlin, L., Lockeretz, W., Bell, R. 2009. Purchasing foods produced on organic, small and local farms: a mixed method analysis of New England consumers. Renawable Agriculture and Food systems. 24 (4),267‐275. Renting, H., Marsden, T.K., Banks, J. 2003. Understanding alternative food networks: exploring the role of short food supply chains in rural development. Environment and Planning A. 35, 393‐ 411. Ibery, B., Maye, D. 2005. Alternative (shorter) food supply chains and specialist livestock products in the Scottisch‐English borders. Environment and Planning A. 37, 823‐844. 16

FASFC POLICY ON FOOD SAFETY IN THE SHORT SUPPLY CHAIN Ir. Herman Diricks Director‐general of the directorate‐general Control Policy of the FASFC E‐mail: herman.diricks@favv.be Socio‐economic trends, consumer demands and increasing environmental awareness have entailed changes in the ways of presenting and supplying food to the consumer. In the approach towards food safety at both European and national level, it is important to anticipate these societal developments. The European Union as we know it today is built on diversity with each country having its own particularities and specific needs. For this reason provisions with respect to flexibility and subsidiarity have been included in the European hygiene regulations. This means that in some specific cases the member states have the authority to adopt down their own national rules while at the same time ensuring the achievement of the objectives of the European hygiene regulations. The national authorities have the best understanding of the diversity and the socio‐ economic situation in their country and therefore are in the best position to adopt such rules in consultation with the different target groups involved. Flexibility and subsidiarity with respect to direct supply of foodstuffs to final consumers apply to: direct supply, by producers, of small amounts of primary products to the final consumer or to local retail establishments directly supplying the final consumer; direct supply, by the producer, of small quantities of meat from poultry and lagomorphs slaughtered on the farm to the final consumer or to local retail establishments directly supplying such meat to the final consumer as fresh meat; hunters who supply small quantities of wild game or wild game meat directly to the final consumer or to local retail establishments directly supplying the final consumer; supply of food of animal origin from a retail establishment to other retail establishments if such supply is a marginal, localized and restricted activity. The Belgian Food Safety Agency included specific provisions in its control policy in order to give small producers the opportunity to benefit from this flexibility and subsidiarity. National rules have been laid down with respect to the abovementioned activities. At the moment, a new legislative act with regards to direct supply of products of animal origin at the production site to final consumers or to local retailers supplying directly to the final consumer is in preparation. In addition, criteria for flexibility provided in EU regulations such as 17

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