Food Safety
Online ISSN : 2187-8404
ISSN-L : 2187-8404
Volume 10, Issue 2
Displaying 1-3 of 3 articles from this issue
Original Article
  • Itsuko Horiguchi, Kazuo Koyama, Azusa Hirakawa, Mieko Shiomi, Kaoruko ...
    2022 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 43-56
    Published: 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: June 24, 2022
    Advance online publication: May 13, 2022
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    Key topics related to risk communication and food safety were investigated by three different expert groups. In this study, the Delphi method was used to systematically and iteratively aggregate experts’ opinions, and the topics to be communicated to consumers were expressed and prioritized. The opinions of three groups, consisting of 26 members of the expert committee (EC) from the Food Safety Commission of Japan (FSCJ), 29 local government officials (LGOs) from their respective food safety departments, and 25 food safety monitors (FSM) appointed by the FSCJ, were obtained in the period of June through September 2017. “Safety and security concept” was identified and ranked high in all groups. This topic identified “Zero-risk” demand of consumers without understanding risks as the reverse side of safety. The EC group prioritized additional issues, such as “concept of risk” and “safety costs and relevant risk management”. The LGO and FSM groups prioritized specific hazard items for food poisoning and preventive measures. With regard to the so-called “health foods”, the EC and LGO groups indicated insufficient transmission of scientific evidence from the government to consumers, and the FSM group indicated insufficient understanding by consumers of the food labeling system for health and nutrition. Because consumers do not fully understand all concepts of food safety, governments are encouraged to disseminate the probability of risk and the knowledge of risk reduction directly to the consumers by using simple and easy-to-understand terms.

Review
  • Masahiro Nakamoto
    2022 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 57-69
    Published: 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: June 24, 2022
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    In Japan, the Positive List (PL) system was introduced (Enforcement: June 1, 2020) in the regulative field of Food Apparatus, Containers, and Packaging (ACP) by the recent amendment of the Food Sanitation Act. Under this situation, continuous requests for the risk assessments from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) to the Food Safety Commission of Japan (FSCJ) will be expected. To enhance fairness and transparency and to clarify the data required for the risk assessment, the FSCJ established its “Guidelines for the Risk Assessment of Food Apparatus, Containers, and Packaging” on May 28, 2019. The Guidelines apply to new Food Contact Materials or Substances (FCMs) after enforcement of the PL system (June 1, 2020). The subject material is synthetic resins, because the PL system was first introduced to them in Japan. In general, the substances that are migrated from ACP are not intended to migrate into foods, and their technological effects on foods are not expected. It can be supposed that the migration of these substances is generally very limited. Therefore, as adopted in the USA and the EU, the Guidelines also adopt the tiered approach for the toxicological data requirement that depend on the estimated migration levels (Tier of Dietary Concentration (Tier of DC)) on the subject substance. The greater the exposure to the substance through migration, the more toxicity test results will be needed. The risk assessment steps by the tiered approach in the Guidelines are (1) migration assessment, (2) toxicity assessment, (3) exposure assessment, and (4) risk characterization. These steps are aimed to harmonize with the general 4 steps of risk assessments: hazard identification, hazard characterization, exposure assessment, and risk characterization. In this review, we will introduce the overview of the Guidelines and details of the above 4 steps.

Risk Assessment Report
  • Food Safety Commission of Japan
    2022 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 70-71
    Published: 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: June 24, 2022
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    Food Safety Commission of Japan (FSCJ) conducted risk assessment of lead (hereinafter referred to as Pb) as a Self-Tasking assessment. Risk assessments of Pb were initially requested from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in relation to revision of the standards for apparatus/container and packaging (ACP) and to revision of the standards for beverages. Considering the diverse modes and routes of human exposure to Pb, FSCJ judged that a comprehensive risk assessment of Pb is appropriate instead of specific risk assessment relating to ACP or beverages. To estimate the actual Pb exposure of the general population in Japan, the present Self-Tasking assessment working group started to inspect available data of blood Pb levels among children (12 years old boys and girls, n = 289, surveyed for 2015-2018) and among adults (pregnant women, n = 96,696, surveyed for 2011-2014)1). FSCJ concluded that average blood level of Pb of current Japan is about 1 µg/dL or less based on the data available at present. Comprehensive evaluation of the findings from the previous epidemiological studies suggested that even blood Pb at the level of 1-2 µg/dL potentially affected children’s neuro-behavioral development or adult renal function. FSCJ, however, concluded that figuring out of a blood Pb level without adverse effects was difficult from the data of epidemiological studies. Pb level in current Japan as about 1 µg/dL or less. This value is close to the level potentially to have some effects, 1-2 µg/dL as suggested by epidemiological studies. Continuous implementation of measures to reduce Pb exposure is thus required. A close watch on the trend of blood Pb level by human biomonitoring is also necessary for verification of the efficacy of the measures to reduce Pb exposure.

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