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GMO Labelling: The Vote Californians Wish They Could Take Back

13 January 2013

Steve Holt reports;

New poll finds that most residents—including many who voted ‘no’ last November—support Proposition 37.

The defeat last November of California’s Proposition 37, which would have required food producers to label products made with genetically modified ingredients, struck a devastating blow to the sustainable food movement. But a new poll, conducted in early December by an independent polling firm, found that 67 percent of voters support labeling genetically modified or engineered foods.

Read the Steve Holt article here;

Food poisoning (and carrots) video launched by Food Authority

14 November 2012

The NSW Food Authority has launched a new social media video on food poisoning, which busts several myths including why there always seems to be ‘carrots’ in your vomit.

The new video is aimed at informing people about how to prepare food safely to prevent food poisoning and can be seen on the Authority’s Facebook page.

NSW Food Authority Chief Scientist Lisa Szabo said the launch of the video is especially timely as it is Food Safety Week and the theme is cross contamination.

“Cross contamination involves the transfer of harmful bacteria from the surface of foods such as raw meat, seafood and poultry to ready to eat foods like salads. Cross contamination usually happens when cutting boards, utensils, or hands are not properly washed after handling raw foods,” said Dr Szabo.

“The video is a fantastic educational resource. It is simple, engaging and encourages social sharing via social media and word of mouth.”

“There is a lot of misinformation and misconceptions about food poisoning, carrots in your vomit being one of them, so if you want to find out more, watch the video!”

Food poisoning is a serious health issue in Australia with an estimated 5.4 million foodborne illness cases reported a year, costing more than $1.25 billion. NSW alone accounts for a third of those cases, so educating the public, as well as industry, about safe food handling practices is absolutely crucial.

“Initiatives such as Australian Food Safety Week are very important for getting the message out there that you really do need to be aware of the dangers of food poisoning and educate yourself on how best to avoid it,” said Dr Szabo.

To view the Food Authority’s new food poisoning video, visit:

The video is supported by information on the Authority’s website at:

BaitSafe├é┬« – a new food safe pest control product is certified by HACCP International

31 October 2012

HACCP International has certified an innovative product called ‘BaitSafe®’ which is particularly suitable for installation in food premises. The ’BaitSafe®’ product, manufactured by “MakeSafe® Pty Ltd, is designed to be installed in ceilings, eaves, external stud walls, sub floors – virtually anywhere that rodents and insects live and breed. When used as an applicator for rodent control, the bait itself is contained within a lockable unit discouraging vermin from moving to bait stations in open production or storage areas in search of food. It lends itself particularly to food industry application.

HACCP International operates a certification system for food-safe equipment, materials and services. It confirms a products ‘fitness for purpose’ for use in food handling and processing facilities that operate to World’s best practice and to the highest International Food Safety standards. Food businesses that operate to the highest international standards are obliged to undertake a due diligence process in selecting products that impact on food safety and industry does have to be particularly careful when dealing with pest control products and methodologies. The HACCP International certification is designed to meet that ‘due diligence’ requirement.

Bill Simos, Managing Director of HACCP International’s operations in Asia says. “BaitSafe® is an “out of the box” invention that is simple to use and brings many advantages to controlling rodents and insects in tight spaces. The food industry is always looking for pest control solutions and this will be a very useful product in managing this difficult task” BaitSafe® was first launched in July 2012 at the FAOPMA Pest Conference in Australia and has since gone on to win the 2012 Australian Food Magazine Award for Food Safety & Innovation in Non-Food.

Mr Gary McMahon, CEO and Co-inventor of BaitSafe® added “The Company and its partners are delighted to achieve HACCP International certification but to gain dual rodent and insect approval was the icing on the cake. This has certainly stamped BaitSafe’s® ability globally, as a versatile and reliable product for the food industry. The applications of BaitSafe® are only limited by the imagination of the user. Innovation is hugely important because customer expectations change; technologies changes and our own capabilities evolve and change. It’s important that we continually look forward to see where our users are going so that we can meet our users at that change point.”

For more information about ‘BaitSafe®,’ please visit or call 1300 065 467

HACCP International is a ‘Conformance Assessment Body’, accredited by JAS-ANZ in the scope of product certification for food-safe equipment, materials and services.


The GM Rice Problem: Food Fraud from China ?

27 October 2012

The GM rice problem: Food fraud from China?


Genetic modification is an on-going problem in Asia’s basmati rice network and it is a problem that importers need to be vigilant in curbing, according to an industry expert.

Richard Werran, CEO of Cert-ID – an independent certification firm specialising in food safety and production,

told FoodNavigator-Asia that GM contamination in rice is food fraud.

He said that the problem stems from China, a country with a “very strong GM mandate”. 
Due to the complex network of Asia’s rice sector; “regrettably this is spilling over into other Asian countries” he added,
and reaching Europe and other global markets via indirect routes.

To listen to the full podcast, please use the link below.