New Guide for Good Hygiene Practices in artisanal cheese production was presented in Brussels by FACEnetwork
The event of official presentation of the European Guide for Good Hygiene Practices in the production of artisanal cheese and dairy products (GGHP), organised on 22 November 2017 in Brussels by FACEnetwork was a real success!
In the morning, the meeting of presentation of the Guide to producers’organisation and to competent authorities took place with an audience of 80 people, coming from 20 different countries.
The participants were:
DG SANTE (Mrs. Sylvie Coulon) first welcomed the participants. Then, presentations of the network and of the GGHP itself were made by FACEnetwork’s members. Moreover, DG SANTE (M. Paolo Caricato) explained the importance of the implementation of “flexibility” in the application of the European hygiene regulation towards artisanal productions. He also highlighted the essential role of guides of good hygiene practices in this framework.
All presentations made at this conference will be soon vailable on FACEnetwork’s website: www.face-network.eu.
Already recognised as reference document
The last hour of the conference was dedicated to a large debate between all the participants, moderated by Maria Remedios Carrasco Sanchez, Vice-President of FACEnetwork.
It came out that, for all the people present (producers and authorities), the GGHP is already recognised as a reference document that will contribute to guarantee an adapted and flexible application of the European hygiene regulations.
The participants were in favour of a large and efficient diffusion of the GGHP. The fact that a new program already started within FACEnetwork about the conception of training tools and the preparation of training sessions for 2018 (Teacheesy) was really appreciated.
Official publication announced
One result of the debate was also the idea that committees could be set in each country in order to follow-up and assess the way how the GGHP will be diffused on the field and if necessary, to help finding solutions when problems are seen. Finally, DG SANTE announced that the GGHP in 24 languages will be very soon available at the website of European Commission and that the Guide will also be published officially, in the Official Journal of the European Union.
Speech in the European Parliament
In the afternoon, took place the most significant moment of the day within the European Parliament: the speech of Frédéric Blanchard, President of FACEnetwork, to the European Deputies of the ComAGRI (Commission of Agriculture and Rural Development). In his presentation, Frédéric Blanchard detailed the characteristics of the farmhouse and artisan dairies, as well as the preoccupations and needs of the sector. He explained how the officially approved GGHP will help to solve concrete problems of the producers in the different European countries.
Also he reminded the audience that the GGHP addresses the issue of sanitary questions, but that other topics are also still to be defended, as for example the problem of nutritional labelling.
The European Deputies reacted positively to FACEnetwork’s presentation. 6 among them expressed their satisfaction with the work done through the GGHP. They reminded the audience that they were involved since the beginning and contributed a lot to the fact that subsidies were granted for the project in 2014. Several Deputies offered to continue supporting FACEnetwork in its future work to disseminate the GGHP efficiently on the field.
More than this great moment within the ComAGRI committee room, the afternoon of 22 November allowed rich and informal exchanges between all the guests of FACEnetwork. These meetings between participants from 20 different countries may result in new collaborations within FACEnetwork in the near future.
To end the days’ proceedings, about 150 people enjoyed the big European cheese buffet, organised with the support of the parliamentary group “the Greens” and composed only with cheeses offered by FACEnetwork’s members.
This event attracted a significant number of Deputies from both commissions “Agriculture/Rural Development” and “Environment”, as well as their assistants. A great moment of conviviality!
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