The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is planning to make changes to the structure and operation of its Scientific Advisory Committees (SACs), including the one which deals with animal feedingstuffs.
FSA’s proposed changes are outlined in a review of six SACs, each of which exists to provide the agency with the “best independent expert scientific advice” needed to support its work.
The six SACs in question are the:
- General Advisory Committee on Science (GACS)
- Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment (COT)
- Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food (ACMSF)
- Advisory Committee on Animal Feedingstuffs (ACAF)
- Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes (ACNFP)
- Social Science Research Committee (SSRC)
The review’s main recommendation is that the role of providing independent, high-level advice and challenge on FSA’s use of science should pass from the GACS to a new Science Council. This is described as a move which “mirrors similar models in other government departments”.
It is also recommended that the FSA should “consult” on moving the functions of the ACNFP and ACAF (feedingstuffs) into a new committee, with a wider remit on innovation in the food chain.
The plan is to establish the new committee by December 2017.