Dáil Éireann - Volume 304 - 15 March, 1978

Written Answers. - Food Regulations.

332. Mr. Bruton asked the Minister for Industry, Commerce and Energy if he will outline the regulations at present governing the materials and articles used in connection with food for human consumption; if any change will be required under EEC rules; if so, when; and how such changes will be made.

Minister for Industry, Commerce and Energy (Mr. O'Malley): I presume the Deputy is referring to materials and articles which may transfer any of their constituents to foodstuffs with which they may come into contact. There are no regulations in force at present in this country in relation to such materials and articles.

The Council of the EEC has adopted a framework directive (No. 76/893/ EEC of 23 November 1976) on the approximation of the laws of the member states relating to materials and articles intended to come into contact with foodstuffs. The framework directive makes provision for the introduction of specific directives on particular materials and articles and one such specific directive (No. 78/142/EEC) relating to materials and articles which contain vinyl chloride monomer and are intended to come into contact with foodstuffs was adopted by the Council of the EEC on 30 January 1978.

Member states are required by 26 May 1978 to amend their laws, if necessary, to comply with the provisions of the framework directive. They are required to amend their laws to comply with the specific directive by 26 November 1979. The measures which are necessary to implement both directives and the manner of implementation are at present under examination.