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Concern as food crime reports are highest since horsemeat scandal


The Telegraph reports that food crime reports are increasing – that they are the highest since the horsemeat scandal from 2013. So, if the situation is anywhere near on a par with the 2013 scandal, why isn’t the media reporting this more widely?

Perhaps the real question should be, is there more food crime? Or are there more reports because of increased awareness of food crime and the dangers to public health it creates?

The National Food Crime Unit

Following recommendations from Chris Elliott, Professor of Food Safety and Founder of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University, Belfast, the National Food Crime Unit (NFCU) was created.

As part of the Food Standards Authority (FSA), the NFCU’s has the following objectives:

  • Prevent food being rendered unsafe or inauthentic through dishonesty
  • Disrupt offending and bring offenders to justice
  • Build global and domestic counter food crime capability

In its fight against food crime, the NFCU is encouraging members of the public and those working within the food and drinks sector to report their suspicions.

The main types of food crime are:

  • Theft
  • Unlawful processing
  • Waste diversion
  • Adulteration
  • Substitution
  • Misrepresentation
  • Document fraud


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