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FSA Releases Guidelines on New Vacuum Packing Legislation

2:13 pm

raw meatThe Food Standards Agency has recently released guidance on how to comply with new legislation regarding the correct, legal use of vacuum packing machines. This new legislation has been brought into effect in the attempts to control the threat of E-coli. Renowned for being an exceptionally dangerous bacterium, E-coli has the ability to survive a multitude of harsh conditions, from freezing temperatures to salty, dry and even acidic  environments.


The FSA states that if E-coli is consumed, even in low doses, the bacteria can cause serious illness and even death. Even if the sufferer recovers from infection, some cases are left with permanent kidney or brain damage. It is thus extremely important for commercial and professional caterers to take all the steps necessary to ensure the highest standards of hygiene are reached. One of the most effective ways to do this is through the control of cross contamination between raw and ready to eat foods, which the FSA states will also help control and reduce the risk of other foodborne bacteria, such as Salmonella.

Cross-contamination in professional kitchens
FSA Recommendation 

As stated, this new legislation primarily concerns the correct use of vacuum packaging machines. In essence, the legislation requires caterers to adequately distinguish the difference between raw and ready to eat foods, understand the dangers when the two come in to contact and how to avoid cross contamination ever taking place. Vacuum packers have been identified as a potential risk area as many are used to package both raw and 'ready to eat' foods. This means that 'ready to eat' foods are more than likely to come into contact with raw, and possibly contaminated, foods rendering the cooked or safe food unfit for consumption.

Multivac Vacuum Packing Machine

The Food Standards Agency says that professional caterers can use the same vacuum packer for the packaging of ready to eat and raw foods, but the appliance must be fully disassembled after every use and cleaned by a competent engineer. The alternative is to use two separate vacuum packing machines, which for most catering businesses is the more viable option.
Buffalo Vacuum Packer Machine

We have a wide selection of vacuum packing machines to suit a variety of catering establishments, all of which are at exceptionally competitive prices. From the small, light duty Buffalo Professional Vacuum Packing Machine 300mm which is easy to clean, operate and protects from oxygen, moisture and freezer burn all the way to the heavy duty, large, high output Multivac Vacuum Pack Machine, capable of producing an extra tight double seam seal which produces packed products suitable for Sous Vide cooking, you are guaranteed to find the right vacuum packing machine for your establishment. 

For more information regarding the new food safety legislation, visit the Food Standards Agency guidelines.













By Tamara Cmiljic

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