Call for comment on increase to food irradiation energy levels

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is calling for submissions on an application to increase the maximum energy level for machines generating X-rays to irradiate food.

FSANZ CEO Dr Sandra Cuthbert said the proposed amendment to the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (the Code) is technologically justified as it increases the efficiency of generating X-rays for food quality and safety purposes.  

“FSANZ evaluations of food irradiation have all concluded that there are no safety concerns associated with irradiation of food at the approved absorbed doses,” Dr Cuthbert said.

There is no change to the permitted absorbed dose for each food due to this application.

“FSANZ found no potential public health and safety concerns with the consumption of food irradiated with 7.5 MeV X-rays at the approved dose levels when using tantalum or gold as the X-ray target material.”

Dr Cuthbert said safety assessments are a key part of the approval process for the irradiation of foods.

To have your say on this application, see our call for comment page. Submissions close at 6pm (AEDT) 15 March 2024.

What happens to my feedback?

Submissions will be published to our website as soon as possible at the end of the public comment period.

FSANZ will consider all feedback received through this submission process before deciding on whether to approve the application.

FSANZ's decision will be notified to ministers responsible for food regulation who can ask for a review or agree that the standard should become law.

More information:

Media contact:

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  • +61 401 714 265 (from New Zealand)