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Catering for food allergies now on cafe menus

Great information for cafes and restaurants regarding legislative requirements for allergy management.


Must read food book 2010: The Coming Famine: The Global Food Crisis and what we can do about it by Julian Cribb

FSANZ seeks comment on proposed food code changes


The Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has invited interested parties to comment on a draft national food standard to ensure high levels of safety in the seed sprouts industry. Respondents will also be asked to comment on an application to approve Advantame as a high-intensity sweetener.

Advantame is a food additive, which has been created by Ajinomoto Company and must be approved by FSANZ before it can be sold in Australia and New Zealand. The body has said that Advantame poses no risk to public health and safety for Australian or New Zealand consumers and recommends it for use in table top sugar substitues, and a range of powdered beverages and protein drinks.

Additionally, the FSANZ is seeking regulatory food safety measures for sprout producers in Australia as there are no consistent national requirements for the production of seed sprouts.

It is now seeking comment on the proposals from industry, public health professionals, government agencies and consumers.

Source: This is a reproduction of an article sourced from

Coles beef to go hormone free

Supermarket chain Coles has confirmed that it will phase out beef from animals treated with hormone growth promotants, or HGPs.

The hormone implants are used by graziers and feedlots to boost cattle growth.

The move comes hot on the heels of Coles’ decision to remove pork produced using sow stalls from its shelves last month.

Coles Finest HGP-free beef range is already available in selected Coles stores. Coles Butcher beef will be progressively converted to HGP-free in stores from January 2011

Source: This is a reproduction of an article sourced from


Spain bans junk food from schools

Source: Just-Food

Spain has launched a new law to curb the sale of “junk” food, snacks and drinks in the country’s schools to tackle growing obesity rates, the Health Ministry announced on Friday (September 3).

The legislation seeks to promote “healthy” food menus in schools and will force the food industry to use new technologies to minimise trans-fat content in food products aimed at school children.

According to the ministry, 9.13% of kids under 15 are obese and 18.4% are overweight. Advertising campaigns to promote healthy nutritional habits with youngsters will also be launched.

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The must see foodies movie of 2010: Milk Wars

See the must see food movie of 2010, soon to be released in Vancouver. 

“Milk War” is the second of several movies that are in the process of being made about Ontario raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt and the raw milk controversy.

Available at

An intriguing tale  of one farmer’s’ stand against over regulated milk markets in Canada.

The Raw Milk Conundrum

The Raw Milk Conundrum

The increasing popularity of raw milk and raw milk products poses a challenge to regulators in Australia. Proponents such as the foodies who love their Euro cheeses raw, the slow food movement, Weston Price and allied health professionals view raw milk very differently from Government licensing and food safety authorities. In a recent case before the courts in NSW, a vendor of raw milk products in a Sydney food market at Bondi Junction is facing court for obstructing and hindering a food inspector and also for selling raw milk.

Middle class, middle aged foodies and believers in the healing properties of raw milk and its products are made to feel like druggies. Retailers and consumers are purchasing raw milk as a cosmetic therapeutic good and not as a food item to try to get around the strict regulations.

Many such as myself grew up drinking my fair share of raw unpasteurised milk don’t really see a problem with it and anyone who has had the pleasure of buying raw milk cheeses at the farm gate or a food markets in Sydney over the past few years certainly has no problem with it. Raw milk cheese have only just made it off the prohibited imports list in Australia since

Proponents such as Sally Fallon-Morell, President of advocacy group the Weston A Price Foundation; estimates about half a million people consume unpasteurised dairy products in the United States, with “explosive” growth in recent years.

The NSW Food Authority and the USFDA state that unpasteurised dairy products can carry pathogens including Listeria monocytogenes, E.Coli and salmonella, which pasteurisation kills, it says. The FDA recorded more than ten outbreaks of illness caused by eating raw dairy products in 2005-2006.

Australia’s food regulator, Food Standards Australia New Zealand is currently reviewing the production and importation of raw milk and raw milk products into Australia. Standard 4.2.4A currently allows for the manufacture of Emmental, Gruyere and Sbrinz raw milk cheese according to Swiss regulations. Also permitted is raw milk Roquefort cheese produced according to French Ministerial Orders and in accordance with some specified conditions. The Authority also recognises that there is increasing demand from consumers for the production and importation of raw milk and raw milk products into Australia.

In a recent report on its web site, FSANZ states: “If there are no control measures to manage potential microbiological hazards, raw milk and products made from raw milk can present a high level of risk to public health and safety. Pasteurisation has been the most effective control measure for eliminating pathogens that may be present in raw milk, including Listeria monocytogensCampylobacter  spp., Salmonella spp. and pathogenic E.coli. Before pasteurisation was introduced, dairy products including drinking milk were frequently implicated in many different food-borne illness outbreaks such as tuberculosis, typhoid and Q Fever, both in Australia and around the world.

In addition to pasteurisation, milk production, transport and dairy processing businesses in Australia are required to control potential food safety hazards associated with their business by implementing documented food safety programs.” Source: FSANZ, Raw Milk Products (including raw drinking milk and raw milk cheese), June 2010.

Fallon-Morell on the other hand, says many people no longer trust the government, instead preferring to listen to anecdotal evidence about raw milk’s health benefits.

It’s a conundrum for regulators, to act as an agent to protect consumer health and protect people against poor hygiene production of milk but also to allow people in certain circumstances to take a chance and consume raw milk and its products if they so choose.

Read the article form the NSW Food Authority in its recent Newsletter below:-


NSW Food Authority Newsletter for NSW Food Industries Volume 18 Autumn 201

The District Court dismissed an appeal against sentences relating to convictions and fines imposed by the Chief Industrial Magistrate concerning three offences under the Food Act, including the obstruction and hindrance of an inspector and the removal of seized food.

The court confirmed fines totalling $3600, and confirmed $15 000 in costs. The Chief Industrial Magistrate stated in the original decision there is no doubt the capacity of officers to carry out their duties is fundamental to, and central to, the proper administration of the Food Act. The Court further stated that ‘the Food Act is clearly important legislation put in place specifically to protect the health and safety of consumers of food products within NSW.’

The offences occurred during the seizure of raw milk products allegedly being sold at an organic food market in Sydney’s Bondi Junction in 2007. Further proceedings in relation to the seizure of the raw milk products are before the courts.

Other Interesting Articles on Raw Milk and the Regulatory Review in Australia

June 2010: