Important changes in food safety regulations
During the recent months several changes were introduced in the field of food safety regulations.
Materials and items containing vinyl chloride and intended for contact with food products
On 5 December 2022, in order to fulfill obligations regarding the approximation of legislation on sanitary and phytosanitary measures to EU legislation (EU Council Directive 78/142/EEC), undertaken by Ukraine within the framework of the Association Agreement, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine adopted Order No. 2199 approving Requirements to materials and items containing vinyl chloride and intended for contact with food products.
Chapter I of these Requirements stipulates that any materials and items intended for contact with food products (materials and items used for the production, packaging, storage, transportation, sale, use, and/or consumption of food products) must contain vinyl chloride in an amount not exceeding one milligram per kilogram of material or item. In addition, it is provided that such materials and items must not transmit any vinyl chloride to the food products they come into contact with (detection threshold for vinyl chloride in a product – 0.01 mg/kg).
Criteria for determining the level of vinyl chloride are regulated by Chapter II of the Requirements. The Order will come into effect on 19 November 2025.
The Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine has published a draft order “On Approval of Requirements for Chicken Eggs”, which provides a number of requirements for chicken eggs that are being put into circulation.
First, chicken eggs will be sorted based on their quality by being classified as “A” and “B” grades. “A” grade eggs are considered to be those with a clean and undamaged shell, clean and transparent egg white, no foreign substances or odor, no embryo development. “B” grade eggs are considered to be those that do not meet the quality indicators of “A” grade.
Second, sorting will also be done by weight. “A” grade eggs will be sorted into the following categories: “XL” (73 g or more), “L” (63-73 g), “M” (53-63 g), and “S” (less than 53 g). Sorting of “B” grade eggs by weight will not be required.
Thirdly, additional requirements are being introduced for stamping, labeling, providing other information; packaging; record keeping by market operators.
The order will come into force on January 1, 2028.
Execution of unscheduled state control measures over compliance with legislation on food products, feed, by-products of animal origin, animal health and welfare during the period of Martial law
In accordance with paragraph 61 of Article 98 of the Law of Ukraine “On State Control over Compliance with Legislation on Food Products, Feed, By-Products of Animal Origin, Animal Health and Welfare”, temporarily, until the cessation or cancellation of Martial law in Ukraine, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine may establish peculiarities of state control over compliance with legislation on food products, feed, by-products of animal origin, veterinary medicine and animal welfare with regard to cargos with products, live animals, non-animal food products and non-animal feed imported into the customs territory of Ukraine.
Based on this, on 3 January 2023, Order No. 5 of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine approved the List of grounds for execution of unscheduled state control measures over compliance with legislation on food products, feed, by-products of animal origin, animal health and welfare during the period of Martial law.
Currently, the list includes the following grounds:
- submission of a written application by business entities to the relevant state supervision (control) authority for the execution of a state supervision (control) measure at their request;
- applications of individuals regarding violations that caused harm to their rights, legitimate interests, life or health, the environment or security of the state;
- assignment by the Prime Minister of Ukraine to conduct an inspection in connection with systemic violations and/or the occurrence of an event that has a significant negative impact on the rights, legitimate interests, life and health of people, the protection of the environment and security of the state;
- inspection of the implementation by a business entity of instructions, orders, or other regulatory documents for eliminating violations of legislation requirements issued as a result of an execution of a previous measure taken by the state supervision (control) authority;
- identification of non-compliance or emergence of well-grounded suspicion of non-compliance based on messages received from:
- countries, associations of countries or international organisations;
- healthcare institutions, business entities in the field of medical practice, executive authorities on the situation that poses a threat to life and health, sanitary and epidemiological well-being of the population;
- accredited laboratories authorised by the State Service of Ukraine for Food Safety and Consumer Protection if the results of laboratory tests indicate non-compliance of food products and/or feed with established requirements, as well as in cases of changes and additions to the results of laboratory tests (trials) previously reported to the State Service of Ukraine for Food Safety and Consumer Protection;
- official veterinarian, authorised veterinarian, slaughterhouse employee authorised to perform the duties of assistant to a state veterinary inspector regarding the signs of violation of legislation on food products, feed, animal health and welfare by the market operator.
The order came into effect on January 20, 2023.