Last updated on 12 March 2010

Minutes of Feedstuffs Sub Committee Meeting: 26 September 2007

Meeting held at WRVS Office, The Old Police Station, Viewfield Place, Stirling FK8 1NH

Committee business

Welcome, minute taking duties and apologies

Attendees

Alison Bannister
Brian Wilson
Robert Watson (minutes)
Wilma Urquhart
Marzena Young
Kate Connelly
Stewart Joyce
Jacqui Bunyan

Apologies were received from George Begg, Geoff Bates, Mungo Howat, Jackie Catterall, Gary Walker and Maureen McLarty.

Minutes of previous meeting

Matters arising from minutes of previous meeting, third paragraph: 'other than' to replace 'that are' before 'primary producers.'

Agenda item: 'Update from the Food Standards Agency', 'Meetings', second paragraph: 'first sample was due' to be deleted and replaced with 'results of analysis would be available' before 'by the end of July'.

Report from regional Quality Systems groups, North Group, first sentence: 'for details of hydrafluoronic acid' to be deleted and replaced with 'to test for hydrocyanic acid and fluorine' before 'in the control plan', and the sentence extended by adding 'as there was no adequately working method for this.'

Penultimate sentence: 'There was conflicting advice from AIC and FSA about' to be inserted before 'Quid'; 'had made' to be deleted; 'that percentage' to be deleted and replaced with 'concerning whether the' before 'banding'.
Last sentence: 'was to be made as current declarations are too high.' to be replaced with 'meant that calculations based on 2% moisture put copper content above the maximum permitted level.'

Update from the Food Standards Agency (FSA)

Funding
In the past this has been between £300k and £325k per year. The Agency has made a bid to Scottish Government for funding for feed law enforcement and this may be finalised by mid-October. At present there are no guarantees of funding provision.

Mycotoxin project
A letter has been sent to local authorities, inviting their participation in a mycotoxin analysis project. Stewart Joyce mentioned that previously there had been a few samples with moderately high levels but that these had been very rare. Marzena Young asked if guidance could be given on what types of material should be tested. Jacqui Bunyan would make enquiries on further testing.
Action: Jacqui Bunyan

Code of Practice
The Code of Practice on Feed Law Enforcement is going to be reviewed towards the end of the year and the Feed Law Practice Guidance will also be issued.

Further courses in Level One training are to be run (two days per course, 25 people in each session, Glasgow and Dundee). Two Level Two courses are to be run in England shortly (as pilots), and Level Two courses will then be rolled out across the UK during 2008.

Declarations on compliance with the Feed Hygiene Regulations will be sought from the relevant feed businesses, and guidance on seeking this will be issued in late October.

GA21 maize from Argentina
This product is acceptable for use as food but not as feed. Local authorities can accept a certificate of compliance to indicate that there is non-GM maize in any particular consignment. Where no certificate exists checks may be required.

Bt10 maize from USA
The previous EU decision to prevent import of this product has been challenged and is now revoked.

The Feed (Specified Undesirable Substances) (Scotland) Regulations 2007
These Regulations come into force this year.

Zinc Sulphate and Rice Products from China
Zinc sulphate from China has been suspected of contamination with heavy metal (cadmium). The situation is being monitored as are imports of wheat gluten rice products for melamine content.

National Guidance for Good Practice on the Feed Hygiene Regulations
The revised guidance is now available on the FSA website.

The Animal Feed Labelling Directive
The Directive has still to be adopted and ratified by the EU Commission by means of a Regulation. This will replace four sets of existing Regulations.

Update from Public Analysts

There is an apparent discrepancy regarding copper content in feed material when 12% moisture content is taken into account.

A query has been raised with the FSA as to what their requirements are for Public Analyst laboratories to acquire accreditation for feed analysis.

Failure for analysis of statutory statement declarations (approximately 10%) tends to be in relation to nutrition content, especially oil and protein. The figures will hopefully be submitted by sampling authorities on the FSS database. Marzena Young pointed out that there were criticisms within local authorities of double entries of data. It was also mentioned that other relevant data could not be entered such as vitamin levels. Jacqui Bunyan said that FSA representation could be given if required.

Update from Animal Medicines Inspectorate (AMI)

Jackie Catterall was not present. Kate Connelly advised that in future Jackie will be asked for a brief written report if any matters need to be raised in her absence.

Update from LACORS Feed Focus Group

This will be checked with Maureen McLarty.

Reports from Regional Quality Systems Groups

North: Marzena Young reported that a feed labelling project with 10 labels assigned to each authority would examine labels for compliance with the Regulations.

The only authority to express interest in taking part in the FSA mycotoxin project is Aberdeenshire. At present they are trying to standardise inspection forms. No farm visits have been undertaken as yet and the group was awaiting further guidance.

There will be changes to the Code of Practice on Feed Law Enforcement and these are still awaited.

Further Level One and HACCP courses are being sought; Campden and Chorleywood have given good quality courses in the past though these have been expensive. Clarification was sought on what constitutes a relevant course for Continuous Personal Professional Development (CPPD) purposes.

West: Alison Bannister sought clarification on certain aspects of registration.

Procedures from East Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire on Feed enforcement had been updated to incorporate the Code of Practice guidelines.

Inspection report document had been printed for primary visit and sampling visits.

Field staff's non-compliance with biosecurity measures appears not to be an offence in terms of legislation for feed enforcement, but this may lead to the commissioning of other Animal Health legislation.

Renfrewshire had a query regarding chlorella (algae), which was fed to plankton and whether this was covered by feedstuffs legislation; it appears that it is not.

East: Brian Wilson raised the necessity for biosecurity.

FSA audits appear to look for greater detail in environmental health training records than in their trading standards counterparts.

Joint farm visits were also suggested where possible.

Animal Feedingstuffs Conference

Brian Wilson distributed a prospective programme for a possible future conference. This could also be useful for CPPD purposes. It was suggested that it could be held in early 2008 before April. Kate Connelly suggested that the conference was a worthwhile concept, although consideration should also be given to the incorporation of interactive sessions in addition to speakers, for example workshop sessions, group discussions and exercises to encourage greater participation amongst attendees. A small working group would be set up to take this forward and would include Brian Wilson and Jacqui Bunyan.

Minutes of Stakeholder Meeting on animal feed issues: 20 July 2007

A query arose regarding Scottish representation on the Animal Feed Law Enforcement Liaison Group (AFLELG). No other issues appear to have been raised and progress in regard to representation may be made in the future.

SEERAD premises database update

The FSA holds this database with 31,666 entries ordered according to area, and available in Microsoft Excel spreadsheet format. The database is not complete and the farms that appear have been included because of their membership of the Single Payment Scheme.

The protocol for data sharing has to be signed and returned to Jacqui Bunyan by post, and a list of premises will be forwarded.

Any other business

Jacqui Bunyan said that the distribution list for minutes needs updating. No funding was available from FSA for refresher training of lead assessors as this was felt to be unfair to those who had not received the initial training.

Marzena Young reported that feed hygiene seminars highlighting the awareness of the requirements for farmers is being organised by herself and Alison Bannister, and will possibly take place in November.

Wilma Urquhart reported that LACORS risk assessment for feed businesses was being adopted within Aberdeenshire at present.

Brian Wilson reported that Quality Auditor training was to be arranged at Stirling. He also raised a query regarding the necessity and types of qualification required for feed law enforcement.

Kate Connelly said that she will receive minutes form Brian Wilson following his attendance at the SFELC meeting, and suggested that this may be a forum for Regional Group issues to be raised. The group was asked to prepare a written report (or reference to a web link) for circulation or access in advance of these meetings.

Next meeting

The date, time and venue of the next meeting would be arranged to predate SFELC meeting.