Listeria outbreak: multi-agency investigation underway

A multi-agency investigation is being carried out into cases of listeria infection in nine seriously ill hospital patients in England, five of whom have sadly died.  No infections have been found in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

On 14 June, Public Health England (PHE) announced the number of deaths related to pre-packed sandwiches and salads at hospitals had risen from three to five. It also announced the number of confirmed cases had risen from six to nine.

Consultation launched on adding folic acid to flour

The UK government is consulting on plans to introduce mandatory fortification of flour with folic acid in the UK help prevent neural tube defects in foetuses.

The launch of the 12-week consultation follows years of campaigns urging the Government to make the fortification of flour mandatory.

Scottish Government introduce new healthy eating regulations on school meals

New regulations on school meals will be introduced in Scotland as part of an effort to tackle childhood obesity.

The regulations include setting a maximum limit on the amount of red processed meat that can be consumed over the course of the school week.

Scotland will become the first part of the UK to set such a limit when the change is brought in.

Food waste worse than plastic for climate change says Zero Waste Scotland

Food waste from Scottish homes even worse for climate change than plastic waste, Zero Waste Scotland warns as it urges everyone to play their part through its new Food Waste Reduction Action Plan.

The agency issued the warning as it began work to implement its new Food Waste Reduction Action Plan, launched with the Scottish Government with the aim of reducing food waste across Scotland by a third by 2025.

Scottish Water launches £30 million project for new water supply

A £30 million project to improve services, and ensure high quality drinking water to more than 54,000 people in parts of Bearsden, Milngavie, Clydebank and Strathblane, will be carried out for Scottish Water by its partners Caledonia Water Alliance (CWA). It is expected this work will take around two years to complete. 

The project will change the source of the water supply from the ageing Burncrooks Water Treatment Works (WTW) in West Stirlingshire to the state-of-the-art Milngavie WTW in East Dunbartonshire.

HPS publish annual gastrointestinal surveillance reports for 2018

Health Protection Scotland (HPS) published the following gastrointestinal surveillance reports for 2018: 

Hepatitis A 

In 2018, there were 34 cases of Hepatitis A reported to HPS. This is lower than that reported in 2017 when 153 cases were reported. However, these reports in 2017 included 91 cases associated with a foodborne outbreak of Hepatitis A focused in NHS Lanarkshire.​

Hepatitis E 

Traffic-free days begin in Edinburgh

City of Edinburgh Council tweeted a picture of one iconic street devoid of cars

On the Sunday 5 May roads in the centre of Edinburgh were closed to traffic for the first time as the city joined the Open Streets movement to reduce air pollution.

It is the first city in the UK to join the Open Streets movement, a movement which has seen cities around the world temporarily close some streets to all but pedestrians and non-motorised vehicles on a regular basis.

Acrylamide in food guidance

New guidelines have been published for acrylamide in food by Food Standards Scotland in partnership with SFELC Food Safety and Food Standards Sub Committees. 

The guidelines are intended to help authorised officers with the implementation and interpretation of Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/2158. 

East Renfrewshire Council raise allergen awareness with short video

Environmental Health at East Renfrewshire Council have created a short video in a bid to raise awareness of allergen information requirements for food businesses. 

The video aimed at food businesses and consumers aims to ensure that they are aware of the allergen requirements and they can trust the food they buy and are protected. 

The video can be viewed here.

Revised version of “Guidance for Local Authority Enforcement Officers on the Production of Cheese from Unpasteurised Milk”

Following publication of the document titled ‘Guidance for Local Authority Enforcement Officers on the Production of Cheese from Unpasteurised Milk’, by the SFELC Joint Specialist Cheese & Risky Foods Short-Life Working Group in October 2018, a new Version 2 of the guidance has been produced and ratified at the SFELC meeting on Friday 26 April 2019.  

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