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From Farm to Fork: How the EU Ensures Your Food is Safe

This week the annual Taste festival arrives in Dublin and as we turn our attention to all things gastronomic the EU is asking consumers to really think about the food that they purchase and the processes involved in getting it to our plates, and just how our food chain is protected: from "farm-to-fork."

In a recent Irish survey* 59% of respondents said that they were more conscious of what food they bought and where they bought it since the horsemeat scandal and 53% said that they are now concerned about the origin of their food. 76% said that they are confident that the food they eat is safe and 58% said that they always read the label before they buy a new product. Only 51% knew that the same rules apply to food safety across all 27 EU member countries.

Animal health and welfare and plant health are fundamental to the safety of the food that we eat. We often take for granted that the food that arrives on our plate is safe, but it is no coincidence. Food that makes it to our tables has gone through rigorous checks and the good news is that this process is going to be improved to make it more modern and efficient.

On Monday 6th May the European Commission's Directorate General for Health and Consumers adopted a package of measures to strengthen the enforcement of health and safety standards for the whole agri-food chain. Thanks to the new legislation consumers will benefit from safer products and a more effective and more transparent system of controls along the chain. The package of measures provides a more risked-based approach to the protection of health and more efficient application of the rules guiding the food chain.

Catherine Fulvio, Irish Celebrity Chef and Ambassador for the EU’s "Farm-to-Fork" initiative, has the following advice for consumers: “I’m pleased to be involved in this campaign, which aims to impress on people the importance of looking after the health of our animals and plants, and to restore consumer confidence in our food sector: it's important the consumer knows and understands exactly where their food comes from.”

“Although the horsemeat scandal knocked our confidence it was an opportunity for the EU to improve our food safety legislation; I now feel confident about the safety of our food: you should too.” she continued.

Catherine Fulvio will be giving demonstrations at the European Commission’s “Food for Thought” Theatre at the Taste of Dublin this coming weekend.

*Survey carried out by Heneghan PR with 100 Irish based respondents.

Source: Envirocentre.ie - From Farm to Fork: How the EU Ensures Your Food is Safe