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The FBIA advocates for the interests of food and beverage importers with government regulators and statutory entities involved in food and beverage importation. The organization strives to reduce the burden of regulations while meeting the government's public policy goals.

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Members have access to technical assistance across the imported sector, guidance and support on industry issues, education and information on regulatory obligations, and access to various networking opportunities.

Here are FSANZ’s media issues for the week: General The recent appointment of Mark Booth as the new Chief Executive Officer for FSANZ was mentioned this week in this article on an Australian food news website. As we all know, drinking coffee in its liquid form is becoming so dull and uninteresting these days, so thankfully Japan has come up with a way around it: spreadable coffee is now on the market! Read more. Food packaging is an under-acknowledged key player in keeping fruits and vegetables fresh and safe to eat for a long time, says a researcher looking into how innovative packaging techniques can extend shelf-life and preserve quality. Read more. After heavy rain brought an influx of grasshoppers to central Australia, a local farmer is now looking at turning his ‘pests into advantages’ by breeding them for commercial sale as food for humans. Read more. Labelling As of this week, some New Zealand beer producers are voluntarily printing nutritional information panels on their labels including sugar content, preservatives, carbohydrate content, and total kilojoules/calories to help consumers understand what’s in their beer and bust the misconception that beer is high in sugar. Read more. According to this article, Australia’s major supermarkets are under fire from dietitians for not providing adequate nutritional information on their websites for online shoppers to make informed choices about products like they can by reading labels in store. Dairy farmers remain unhappy with non-dairy beverage companies using the term “milk” to describe their plant-based drinks, and are calling for a “truth in labelling crackdown”. Read more. Food safety The forecast for a warmer-than-usual autumn has the Australian Food Safety Information Council warning of an increase in the growth of the fatal death cap mushroom, which is commonly mistaken for safe edible varieties and has killed four people in the past 16 years. Read more. Is it OK to eat the unaffected slices of bread from a half-mouldy bag? This article gives consumers a few tips for how far out you can push the use by dates on different products, in light of a recent food wastage campaign in the UK urging consumers to use the old fashioned ‘sniff test’ to check if their food is safe to eat. Diet and nutrition Having trouble sleeping? Boosting your intake of prebiotics—dietary fibres found naturally in foods like chicory, artichokes, raw garlic, leeks and onions—may help improve your snooze and act as a buffer against the physiological impacts of stress, a new study claims. Read more. From today, schools in NSW are required to predominantly sell freshly made food such as sandwiches, stir fries and pastas and adhere to a total soft drink ban as part of a government initiative that aims to combat obesity in children. Read more. Quirky Are you a raging vegetarian with a yearning to express yourself, but have no idea how? Oh kale no! This article has all the answers, with everything from eggplant earrings to Brussel sprout suits. IFN 02-17 - Trial of the electronic Imported Food Inspection Report Issued: 15 February 2017 Link: http://www.agriculture.gov.au/import/goods/food/notices/ifn-02-17 Import Industry Advice Notice 18/2017   27 February 2017 Update to Disinfectant Lists for Approved Arrangements (AA) has been published on the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources website and can be accessed via the following link: http://www.agriculture.gov.au/import/industry-advice/2017/18-2017 Business Forums on Country of Origin labelling for Food The Australian Government is inviting businesses involved in the food industry to attend forums to learn more about the changes in country of origin labelling that started on 1 July 2016. The forums will provide information for small and medium businesses that work in food production, wholesaling, retailing, importing and related industries such as printing and packaging. At the forums you will receive an overview of the changes, including a demonstration of the online labelling tool, which can be used to help identify appropriate labels for food products. The forums will be held in most capital cities and some major regional centres during March 2017. For further detail and to register, please visit www.business.gov.au/FoodLabellingForums For more information about the changes to country of origin labelling for food, please visit www.business.gov.au/foodlabels Competition and Consumer Amendment (Country of Origin) Act 2017 The Competition and Consumer Amendment (Country of Origin) Act 2017 has been passed by Parliament and come into effect. The Act simplifies the tests to justify a country of origin ‘made in’ claim by clarifying what substantial transformation means and removing the onerous 50 per cent production cost test. This means that businesses producing goods such as medicines, food, textiles, clothing and footwear will find the criteria for using a ‘made in’ claim clearer and simpler. Food businesses will only need to consider the proportion of local and imported ingredients by ingoing weight, not value, when making origin statements. Other businesses will no longer have to recalculate the relative shares of imported and local content to support their origin claim. The Act also creates a new safe harbour defence for products labelled in accordance with Information Standards, such as the Country of Origin Food Labelling Information Standard 2016. Complying with these defences will assure businesses that their country of origin claims are not false or misleading under the Australian Consumer Law. ATMOsphere Australia will be at Luna Park Sydney on May 2, 2017. The conference will provide a unique opportunity to interact with HVAC&R stakeholders and to exchange opinions with the market’s leading end users. Entry for all end-users is free. To learn more go to ATMOsphere Australia 2017 Learn more about Personal Property Securities Registry (PPSR), Rigby Cooke A recent West Australian Supreme Court decision has underlined the importance of registering your security interests on the Personal Property Securities Registry (PPSR), even when you think you should be able to rely on possession to gain priority over other secured parties. http://www.rigbycooke.com.au/latest/securities-beef-failure-to-register-on-the-ppsr-makes-mincemeat-of-lenders IFN 03-17 – Documentary evidence for community protection profile questions The purpose of this notice is to remind brokers and importers of their responsibility to maintain documentary evidence to support answers to imported food community protection profile questions (CP questions). http://www.agriculture.gov.au/import/goods/food/notices/ifn-03-17 PMI The Australian Industry Group Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI) has increased by 8.1 points to 59.3 in February, recording a fifth consecutive month of expansion and its strongest result since May 2002. Read the full report here . Imported Food Section Update Imported Food Notice 03-17 - Documentary evidence for community protection profile questions, has been published to remind brokers and importers of their responsibility to maintain documentary evidence to support answers to imported food community protection profile questions (CP questions). This notice can be accessed via the following link: http://www.agriculture.gov.au/import/goods/food/notices January Failing Food Report The failing food report for JANUARY 2017 is now available to view on the website and can be accessed via the following link: http://www.agriculture.gov.au/import/goods/food/inspection-compliance/failing-food-reports A reminder that the ICS will be unavailable for a 5.5 hour period from 23:00 AEDT Saturday 4 March until 04:30 AEDT Sunday 5 March 2017. The outage is necessary to perform system maintenance. Industry clients should make arrangements to have cargo cleared outside of these hours. Review of measures on prepared and preserved tomatoes The SEFs for review of measures on certain exporters has been published by the ADC at http://www.adcommission.gov.au/cases/EPR%20351%20%20450/EPR%20354/054%20-%20Statement%20of%20Essential%20Facts%20349%20and%20354.pdf Australian PSI – Ai Group Report The Australian Industry Group Australian Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI) fell by 5.5 points to 49.0 in February, indicating broadly stable conditions across the sector after three months of growth. To read the report click here . Call for submissions on new processing aids for wine ​Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has called for submissions on an application to permit pectins and carrageenan as processing aids in Australian-made wine.Date: 20/02/2017 FSANZ’s Acting Chief Executive Officer Peter May said the processing aids, which are already permitted in imported wines, have been found to be safe and technologically effective as fining agents. “At the levels proposed, any residual traces of the processing aids are very low and no public health and safety concerns have been found with their intended use,” Mr May said. All FSANZ decisions on applications are notified to ministers responsible for food regulation who can decide to ask for a review or agree that the standard should become law. The closing date for submissions is 6pm (Canberra time) 3 April 2017. More information

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