China to strengthen tracking assessment on dairy safety standards

The Ministry of Health said at a news conference that efforts will be made to strengthen the tracking assessment system, and, in line with the opinions from all sectors and international standards, constantly revise and improve the 66 national safety standards on dairy products published by the ministry on March 26 this year.

The ministry, together with other relevant departments, began to improve the previous over 160 dairy safety standards in late 2008 and integrated them into 66 new standards. There are 15 standards on dairy products(including raw milk, infant food and dairy products), 2 standards on good manufacturing practices and 49 standards on testing methods. The new standards are focused on solving such problems as overlapping or contradiction of some indices, and lack of important indices.

According to Chen Rui, deputy director-general of the ministry’s Food Safety Coordination and Health Supervision Bureau, the new standards have the following features as compared with previous ones:

-Being science-based: The standards are based on food safety risk assessment with public opinions solicited for improvement.

-Strict limit standards: The limit standards closely related to human body health are highlighted, reflecting the mandatory nature of standards.

-Unification: They integrated the compulsory contents in standards on food hygiene, quality, agro produce safety and industrial standards

-High practicability and authoritativeness: They are formulated in line with the country’s actual conditions and industrial situation, with great focus laid on practicality. The content and formats are refined and simplified, and the institution in charge of the explanation of the standards is identified.

-Consistency with international standards: The micro-organism indices are revised with reference to the international standards of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, and micro-organism sampling scenarios improved in the light of the general international principles.