Food assurance schemes

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Transcript Food assurance schemes

Phase 4
Food assurance
Food assurance schemes
EU law lays down stringent requirements guaranteeing the standards of all
European products. In addition, EU quality schemes identify products and foodstuffs
farmed and produced to exacting specifications.
The only EU enforced quality assurance schemes in the food industry are the
certification of regional quality assurance in the European food industry (Council
Regulations (EEC) 2081/92 and (EEC) 2082/92) and the framework for organic
farming (Council Regulation (EEC) 2092/91).
The main aim of quality assurance and certification schemes is to differentiate the
included products from the rest of the production to obtain an increased market
price as well as a marketing advantage.
Geographical indications and traditional specialities
In 1993 EU legislation came into force which provides for a
system for the protection of food names on a geographical or
traditional recipe basis. The geographical indications and
traditional specialities highlights regional and traditional foods
whose authenticity and origin can be guaranteed. There are
three separate schemes:
• Protected Designation of Origin (PDO);
• Protected Geographical Indication (PGI);
• Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG).
Under this system a named food or drink registered at a
European level will be given legal protection against imitation
throughout the EU.
Geographical indications and traditional specialities
Producers who register their products for protection benefit from having a raised
awareness of their product throughout Europe. This may in turn help them take
advantage of consumers’ increasing awareness of the importance of regional and
speciality foods.
The three schemes
Protected Designation of Origin - PDO: covers agricultural
products and foodstuffs which are produced, processed and
prepared in a given geographical area using recognised knowhow.
Protected Geographical Indication - PGI: covers agricultural
products and foodstuffs closely linked to the geographical area.
At least one of the stages of production, processing or
preparation takes place in the area.
Traditional Speciality Guaranteed - TSG: highlights traditional
character, either in the composition or means of production.
What products are covered by the schemes?
Most foods intended for human consumption are able to
apply for registration including meat, dairy and fish
products, honey, fruits and vegetables, beverages made
from plant extracts, bread, pasta, pastries, cakes, biscuits
and confectionary. Examples of other products which can
also be registered under particular designations are as
• PDO and PGI – natural gums and resins, hay, essential
oils, mustard paste, cork, cochineal, flowers and
ornamental plants, wool, wicker, scutched flax, cotton
and salt;
• TSG – pre-cooked meals, prepared condiment sauces,
soups and broths, ice cream and sorbets, chocolate (and
other food preparations including cocoa).
Examples of registered foods
Cornish Pasty
Tarta de Santiago
Other schemes
The schemes regarding geographical indications and traditional specialities
operate in the market alongside an increasing number of public and private
certification schemes.
Red Tractor – UK
The Red Tractor scheme was started by UK
farmers, food producers and retailers and was
launched in 2000. The Red Tractor scheme is a
food assurance scheme which covers
production standards developed by experts on
safety, hygiene, animal welfare and the
environment amongst other factors.
All suppliers in the Red Tractor food chain are
inspected and certified by an independent
professional body. The Red Tractor certifies
that food has been produced to these
independently inspected standards right
across the food chain – from farm to pack.
Red Tractor
The Red Tractor logo on the pack means the food or drink has
met these responsible production standards and is fully
traceable back to independently inspected farms in the UK.
Multi-ingredient products must contain at least 95% Red
Tractor certified ingredients to be labelled as Red Tractor
products. Up to 5% non-Red Tractor ingredients are permitted
to allow for minor ingredients such as seasoning, herbs and
Processors are allowed to use the logo to highlight that the
main ingredient is produced to Red Tractor standards, even if
some of the other ingredients in the product are not from
assured sources, for example the pork in a sausage. However
criteria applies (e.g. the named ingredient must comprise at
least 65% of the food).
Red Tractor Assurance Schemes
There are 'core' schemes (shown below) in six product
sectors, all wholly owned by Red Tractor.
Products covered
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Crops and Sugar Beet
Cereals, oilseeds, pulses and sugar
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Fresh Produce Scheme
Fruit, vegetables and salad
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Poultry Scheme
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Pig Scheme
Pig meat
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Dairy Scheme
Red Tractor Assurance for Farms Beef and Lamb Scheme
Beef and lamb
Red Tractor Assurance for Farm Meat Processing Scheme
Beef and lamb, Chicken, Pork
More information about Red Tractor can be found on:
Neuland – Germany
Neuland was established in 1988 as a private scheme, as an
association for applying good animal practice and environmentally
friendly livestock production. The goal of the scheme is to
establish a quality orientated, animal and environment friendly
livestock production on many farms across Germany. Neuland has
a robust system of regulations and guidelines for producing meat
which every single producer has to adhere to. The core emphasis
in these guidelines is the principle of keeping animals as much as
possible in their natural environment.
Animals covered by the scheme include pigs, cattle, broiler poultry,
laying hens and sheep.
The typical chain is that animals are being sold for a fair price (for
the producer), then slaughtered and finally marketed to specialty
meat outlets, catering or restaurants.
There are specific guidelines for each animal,
however generally guidelines consist of criteria
• Livestock husbandry;
• Feed;
• Transport;
• Livestock care;
• Grassland usage;
• Conversion of farms;
• Control.
Guidelines – Pork production
There are many rules for pork producers to follow under the
Neuland scheme, including:
• Pork producers must convert the entire farm to Neuland
condition and are not allowed to leave parts of it under
conventional conditions.
• In terms of feed only domestically produced feed is allowed, as
this excludes the use of GMO or Soya feed and any growth
enhancing supplements or antibiotics, which is prohibited as
• The upper limit of livestock for a Neuland producer is strictly
regulated with a piglet producer only allowed to have 95 sows,
whereas for pig fattening the upper limit is 650 fattening
places. As well as benefiting the livestock (e.g. more space and
more time for the producer to care for the livestock), this also
prevents large scale producers joining the scheme and
dominating it.
More information on Neuland can be found on: