POULTRY BRINE INJECTION DAFF AND DTI PRESENTATION. PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND FISHERIES. Dr. NTSHABELE DIRECTOR: FOOD SAFETY AND QUALITY ASSURANCE. Presentation Outline. Background on the regulators: DAFF; DOH; NCRS The Brine Injection Issue
PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND FISHERIES
DIRECTOR: FOOD SAFETY AND QUALITY ASSURANCE
The Directorate: Food Safety and Quality Assurance administers the poultry meat regulations under the Agricultural Product Standards Act, 1990 (Act No. 119 of 1990)
The current regulations regarding control over the sale of Poultry Meat No. R. 946 of 27 March 1992, as amended by government notice No. R. 988 of 25 July 1997 gives provision to tenderize the breast meat of a carcass
These regulations address mainly carcasses. The poultry market has over the years moved to portions in the form of Individually Quick Frozen (IQF).
The maximum water pick up and/or chemical treatment of a carcass allowed is 8% in these Regulations
The Department of Health (DoH) administers the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act, 1972 (Act 54 of 1972) as amended by Act, No. 39 of 2007, with effect from 27 March 2009
Section 2 prohibits the sale, or manufacture or import for sale, of any foodstuffto which any substance has been added so as to increase the mass or volume of such foodstuff with the object to deceive.
The new Food Labeling and Advertising Regulations were published in the Government Gazette No. R 146 of 1 March 2010, implementation thereof comes into effect 24 months from the date of publication (i.e. from 1 March 2012).
24 months period was as a result of request from the industry to ensure compliance with regulations
Regulation 26(2) in the new labeling Regulations No. R 146 addresses the needfor declaration of the presence of one or more valuable or characterising ingredients, or in the case where the description has the same effect, then ingoing percentage of this ingredient at the time of manufacture. This is called Quantitative Ingredient Declaration (QUID).
In this case labeling required QUID to indicate presence for both meat and added water (brine included) on the main panel in bold capital letters at least 3 mm in height. For example:
Sunshine Chicken portions
Chicken (92%), water (8%)
A definition for brine was also included in R146/2010 i.e Brine is a solution of sodium chloride (salt) in water where the solution is used for curing, flavouring and/or preserving the foodstuff.
The National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS) was established on the 1st September 2008, under the auspices of the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications Act, (NRCS Act), Act 5 of 2008. It emerged as an independent organization from the original Regulatory Division of the South African Bureau of Standards and is defined as a Section 3a organization under the Public Finance Management Act.
The NRCS is primarily responsible for the administration of three Acts that reside under its jurisdiction, namely
the NRCS Act 5 of 2008,
the Trade Metrology Act 77 of 1973 and
the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act 103 of 1977.
The NRCS also administers regulations that fall under the jurisdiction of other government departments, as per agreements reached with the respective departments.
The NRCS serves to regulate the adherence to compulsory specifications and technical regulations in South Africa.
This regulatory function addresses flaws in the market system, whereby businesses may produce, import or sell products or services that may harm the consumer and / or the environment or may fall short of what is promised in terms of quantity (trade metrology) or safety.
Poultry meat is regulated by SANS 289 and SANS 458 under the Sale of Goods regulations published in GG 30003 dated 21 June 2007
SANS 458 also prescribes specific procedures to be applied when testing frozen products where water is added or where it is glazed.
NRCS will amend their standards to prevent injections for weight gain/yield enhancement: “Poultry meat may not be injected with any liquid or substance purely for weight gain”
Brine injection was identified as a detrimental quality factor when administered beyond descriptions in DAFF regulations.
DAFF commissioned the Agricultural Research Council (ARC) to conduct research on brine injection
Terms of reference for the brine injection research:
quality of injected poultry meat w.r.t chemical composition and;
oxidative stability to determine the maximum level of injection to be recommended.
DAFF, NRCS and DOH formed a technical Regulators committee on agricultural products
At a meeting on 24 August 2010 it was decided that a joint survey between NRCS and inspectors form DAFF be conducted to determine an average %-rate at which injection takes place in the industry.
The amounts of brine injection varies per abattoir and per their client’s specifications
Interested parties are or will be invited for specific meetings e.g Consumer unions, South African Poultry Association (SAPA)
- Nutrient dilution
- Higher sodium
- Elevated salt levels
Final report is scheduled for April 2011
DAFF is currently reviewing the poultry regulations
The final report of the research will assist DAFF on how to effectively regulate brine injection technique
Research results which fall under other departments will be officially communicated
DAFF inspectors will continue to conduct inspections and prioritize their action plan to ensure compliance with the current regulations
DAFF will continue with a research in the financial year 2011/2012 to determine effective methods for inspection purposes