Letter: Safeguards on food

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Sir: I should like to reassure your correspondent Michael Bowen (letter, 16 November) that the Government has indeed fulfilled its commitments in respect to the creation of an independent Food Standards Agency.

A new UK-wide Food Standards Agency, quite separate from the government departments responsible for agriculture, is about to be created. After a period of extensive public consultation on the underlying principles of the legislation, the Food Standards Act 1999, which provides the statutory basis for the agency, received Royal Assent last week.

We hope to have the agency fully up and running in the spring of next year precisely to add to and strengthen the safeguards which already exist for consumers in this very important area of public responsibility.


(Baroness Hayman)

Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

London SW1