David Young, partner and head of health and safety at Eversheds, has commented on the recent National Audit Office report into food fraud.
Young said: ‘The report of the National Audit Office in one sense tells us nothing new about the systems for safeguarding the integrity of the food chain in the UK… It articulates the problem but not the solution.
‘That, coupled with the inevitable scaling back of resources in the Food Standards Agency and beyond, was not the cause of the horsemeat scandal, although it would have made it harder to detect.’
He added that we should look to Prof Chris Elliot’s report to ‘confirm not simply what happened but, more importantly, how we stop or reduce the likelihood of it happening again. Elliot was appointed by the government to lead a full review of food chain integrity in light of the horsemeat issue.
Young said: ‘Food fraud is not new, but neither will it simply go away. The key will be in better detection and robust response when it is found.’