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Food hygiene improvements required in the white fish sector of Norway



While the food hygiene in the Norwegian aquaculture sector in general is in line with EEA requirements, there is room for considerable improvements in land-based establishments, processing white fish. This is the overall conclusion of a report published by the EFTA Surveillance Authority today. 

The Authority carried out a mission to Norway in Autumn 2011 to verify that official controls related to the production and placing on the market of fishery products were carried out in compliance with the European Economic Area legislation. 

The aquaculture sector was in general in compliance with the legislation regarding general and specific hygiene requirements, including analysis and management of hazards (HACCP). 

However, in land-based establishments processing white fish, several problems were found, for example:

  • Layout of the premises were not permitting good food hygiene practices
  • Processing procedures did not exclude contamination of products
  • Products were not properly labeled and stored

In addition, the HACCP systems of these establishments were in general not functioning properly.

Some shortcomings in the control procedures of the competent national authority (Mattilsynet) were also pointed out by the Authority.The mission team found no evidence of use of polyphosphates as additives in salted fish during the mission, which has previously been a problem.

The Norwegian Food Saftey Authority took immediate action upon the most serious problems identified on the spot. The other shortcomings identified has partly been addressed in the reply to the draft version of the report. Norway's reply to the draft report is annexed to the final report.

Read the final report here.

For further information, please contact:

Mr. Trygve Mellvang-Berg
Press & Information Officer

tel: (+32)(0)2 286 18 66
gsm: (+32)(0)492 900 187

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