UN FAO Seeks Better Animal Feed Controls
UN's Food and Agriculture Organization urges better controls to cope with animal feed contamination
In the wake of the widening cancer scare in Belgium from dioxin-contaminated animal products, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Thursday said that it has produced guidelines to help prevent animal feed contamination.
FAO urged its member countries to ensure the quality and safety of animal feed and foods for human consumption, saying that a joint FAO/World Health Organization commission that sets international food standards is considering a draft Code of Practice for Good Animal Feeding.
The draft Code covers good animal feeding practices and promotes the use of good practices in the procurement, handling, manufacturing, storage and distribution of commercially produced feeds for food-producing animals. It also provides guidance on general management of production processes, handling of pre-production ingredients and post-production storage and distribution practices.
FAO said the latest food contamination incident, following the outbreak in the United Kingdom of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), or Mad Cow Disease, is another clear warning that animal feeds can have a direct impact on the quality and safety of foods.
In addition to BSE and dioxins, many other substances can contaminate animal feed, including mycotoxins, agricultural and industrial chemicals, microbial pathogens, veterinary drug residues and heavy metals, FAO warned.