Chlorinated Chicken – Are food safety standards at risk post Brexit?

Trade secretary Liam Fox’s recent comments about the possibility of the UK accepting chicken from the US which has been treated with chlorine, have raised questions

Trade secretary Liam Fox’s recent comments about the possibility of the UK accepting chicken from the US which has been treated with chlorine, have raised questions about whether the new trade deals negotiated once we have left the EU may include us accepting lower standards on imported meat.

Chlorinated chicken, which has been given a final wash with an antimicrobial rinse (often referred to as Pathogen Reduction Treatments or PRTs) in order to remove harmful bacteria, has been banned in the EU member states since 1997.

While the EU agrees with the US that meat treated in this way is indeed safe, the concern is rather about whether use of a chlorine wash makes up for poor hygiene within other parts of the supply chain. Europeans believe that consumers are better protected by implementing rigorous safety procedures from farm to fork, with all parties working to the highest standards in order to prevent bacterial contamination in the first place, rather than relying on chemicals to clean up ‘dirty’ meat.

While the Government has so far refused to guarantee that there will be no fall in food standards after Brexit, it has stated that maintaining safety and public confidence in food is of the highest priority.

The controversy around chlorinated chicken is yet another demonstration of how strongly UK consumers, food producers and supermarkets feel about food safety and provenance. The British food industry has made significant progress in these areas in recent years and the Authenticate IS platform has been playing a key role in helping businesses to demonstrate this by providing insight into the entire food chain, giving complete transparency of every link along the way.

For more information about how to join the Authenticate IS platform and safeguard your food business, call us on 01423 548 583 or email enquiries@authenticateis.com

Posted by: Authenticate 03/10/2017