Background and Clarification of Risk Analysis Structure

Safe Food – a Responsibility of the Business Sector
Pursuant to the General Food Law Regulation, companies that produce vegetable oils and fats are responsible for ensuring that the food they supply is safe. This European regulation imposes a large number of conditions on food and feed producers relating to various matters such as inspection, traceability and labelling, removing unsafe products from circulation and reporting these actions to government.

HACCP-based Risk Analysis
The European hygiene regulations (for feed and food) furthermore require companies that produce vegetable oils and fats for animal and human consumption to prepare and maintain a risk analysis. This risk analysis must be based on HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) principles. This is a system that enables companies to manage any risks that are key to animal feed and food safety.

 

Risk Analysis: a process comprising three interrelated components: risk assessment, risk management and risk communication.

Sectoral Risk Analyses

The above-referenced hygiene regulations encourage sectors to develop best practice guidelines. The objective is to provide companies with assistance in developing their own company-specific risk management system and in ensuring that nothing is overlooked. Furthermore, this enhances the awareness creation process. The MFO sector has given substance to this by preparing a sectoral risk analysis for the production of oil from soy beans, rapeseed, sunflower seeds, palm fruits, palm kernels and coconuts. Risk analyses were also produced for the production of pig fat, poultry fat and beef fat. The risk analyses were prepared in close collaboration with the European associations FEDIOL and EFPRA. For the vegetable production chains, risk analyses were prepared for products destined for the feed industry, as well as products destined for the food industry. For the animal fat production chain, the risk analyses are currently limited to products destined for the feed industry. The various risk analyses are available at MVO/EFPRA Risk Analyses (Animal Fat) and MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analyses (Vegetable Oils and Fats).

 

 

Risk Assessment: a scientifically-based process consisting of four steps; hazard identification, hazard characterisation, exposure assessment, risk assessment.

MVO/EFPRA and MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analysis Development Methodology

For the vegetable production chain, a process flow diagram has been developed for each oil containing crop with the following elements: the cultivation of the relevant crop, the storage and transport of the harvested oilseed or oil fruit, the processing and refining thereof into various oil and/or protein-rich products, and the storage and final transport of these products to the feed or food industry. For the animal fat production chain, a process flow diagram has been developed starting with the transport of the animals to the slaughterhouse up to the delivery of the processed products/by-products to the feed industry. Next, for each element an analysis was completed to determine the possible hazards of a biological (B), chemical (C) or physical (P) character that could occur at that point in the chain. Based on the experience of experts, an assessment was then completed to determine the chance that the identified hazards will actually occur in the end product and the seriousness thereof in relation to consumer health. On the basis of the combination chance and seriousness, the risk of the relevant hazard is established.

 

SERIOUSNESS

Low

Medium

High

CHANCE

Very small

1

1

2

Small

1

2

3

Medium

2

3

4

High

3

4

4

The MVO/EFPRA and MVO/FEDIOL risk tables include an explanation (justification) for the purpose of clarifying each established risk. The tables also identify the EU legislation or (industry) standards that specify rules and/or limits concerning the relevant hazard.

Control Measures

The MVO/EFPRA and MVO/FEDIOL risk tables include control measures for each risk. These control measures are based on the following table:

 

RISK

ACTION

1

Does not require any control measures.

2

Does not require any control measures; however a regular assessment is required to determine whether the control measure should be implemented or not.

3

The risk must be managed by means of a verifiable control measure (PRP: Prerequisite Programme).

4

The risk must be managed by means of a specific measure focused on the relevant risk (CCP: Critical Control Point).

Control measures can include things such as in-house analyses, administrative checks, specific inspections, etc.

Risk Assessment of Activities Outside EU Excluded from MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analyses

In terms of the elements that comprise agricultural activities, a hazards identification and characterisation has been completed. However, MVO/FEDIOL has not completed a risk assessment and determination for these elements. The reason for this is that these activities take place outside the EU, as a result of which it is not possible to manage these hazards. It was decided to include these hazards to be able to point out to local entrepreneurs that they are responsible for taking the measures required to control the relevant hazard. The MVO/FEDIOL companies are obliged to verify this when they purchase raw materials. Furthermore, many of these hazards can be managed at the processing or refining level of the oilseeds and oil fruits.

A number of contaminants have not been included in the MVO/FEDIOL Risk Tables

While there is legal limit for a number of contaminants relating to oil products, this does not automatically mean that this produces an actual hazard. An appendix to the MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analyses sets out the various considerations, which is why it was decided not to include certain contaminants in the risk tables. See MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analyses (Vegetable Oils and Fats). This does not always mean that these contaminants are not controlled.

MVO/EFPRA and MVO/FEDIOL Risk Analyses Reinforce Food Safety 

Sectoral risk analyses contribute to increased food safety within the chain. First, they are available to companies for preparing and checking their own risk management system. Second, they support a dialogue among companies and their buyers, suppliers and other stakeholders. The sectoral risk analyses consequently reinforce food safety, improve communication and as such contribute to creating confidence in the food chain.

 

Last modified: October 17, 2017 08:58