FSANZ encourages public participation in setting new pesticide residue limits

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has launched its annual call for public input on potential modifications to Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) for agricultural and veterinary chemicals. This initiative aims to align the regulations governing 127 chemicals in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code with global standards, thus enhancing the quality of imported food and bolstering consumer protection.    

FSANZ is actively working to harmonize its food standards with those established by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority, the Codex Alimentarius Commission, and other esteemed international food standards agencies. The objective is to establish MRLs that not only adhere to global benchmarks but also prioritize public health and safety.    

The core of this annual process lies in conducting meticulous dietary exposure assessments, that determine the permissible levels of chemical residues in food products, guaranteeing that consumers are not exposed to harmful quantities. Proposed changes to MRLs are subject to these assessments.    

This initiative offers multiple advantages, including the reduction of trade barriers, as compliance with international standards facilitates the acceptance of food products in global markets.    

The public engagement in this initiative will ensure a wide range of perspectives, encompassing those of consumers, industry professionals, and experts, which will be taken into consideration during decision-making. Individuals and organizations are encouraged to provide feedback on the proposed amendments until October 4, 2023.