The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed T.D., has launched his Department’s Food Safety and Food Authenticity Strategy to an audience of key stakeholders in the agri-food sector and regulatory partners from Government and State bodies.

Commenting on the importance of food safety and food authenticity to Ireland’s agri-food economy Minister Creed emphasised “There can be no compromise on food safety and the integrity of the food chain. These are the primary building blocks of this Departments work”.

The implementation of the strategy will respond to a number of challenges that the Department and the agri-food sector have to overcome in the coming years covering such topics as new food legislation, the objectives of Food Wise 2025, food authenticity concerns and food safety threats, among others.

In reference to these challenges Minister Creed stated “We must be clear and unequivocal about this commitment to food safety and public health. And we must ensure that the outcomes of our change programme has real and substantive impact and deliver maximum value for the consumer here and abroad”.

Minister Creed addressed the scope of the Strategy as part of his concluding words “Our future plans for food safety and food authenticity are ambitious but we should not fear the breadth of our ambition as we dedicate our resources to improvement. Our objective now is to rise to the challenge and undertake the necessary steps to meet our goals, and reach our ambition. We intend to pursue those goals with energy and enthusiasm”.

Dr. Pamela Byrne, Chief Executive, Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) welcomed the Department’s Food Safety and Food Authenticity strategy stating that it further strengthens collaborative approaches across all stakeholders in the agri food sector in Ireland with a clear focus on consumer protection. “This is an important initiative that sets out a clear strategy to further protect consumer health within an ever changing and innovating global food supply system. Assuring authenticity, monitoring the food chain, detecting fraudulent and deception practices and continually developing the best food safety systems aligned to new and emerging food safety legislation, is embedded in our organisation’s DNA. We welcome the opportunity to collaborate with Department and assist them in delivering on their ambitions and objectives. This Strategy also continues to support the FSAI’s regulatory position of seeking to deliver safe and trustworthy food for everyone”.

Source: Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine