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What Are the Food Contact Requirements in South Africa?

June 20, 2013
Question 

What food contact regulations exist in South Africa? What standards, such as FDA or EU, are recognized?

Answer 

South African food regulations are aligned with CODEX Alimentarius Commission guidelines. The Foodstuffs, Disinfectants and Cosmetics Act (FDCA) 54 of 1972, updated in 2009, controls the sale, manufacture, importation and exportation of foodstuffs (including food packaging), cosmetics, and disinfectants. Specific regulations that impact food-contact materials include R879/2011, which prohibits the manufacture, import, export, and sale of polycarbonate infant feeding bottles containing Bisphenol A (BPA), and R962/2012, which provides general hygiene requirements for food premises and the transport of food. Section 7(2) of R962/2012 states, "A container shall be clean and free from any toxic substance, ingredient or any other substance liable to contaminate or spoil the food in the container."

The South African Department of Health (DOH), Directorate of Food Control is responsible for developing regulations and technical guidelines for food safety, food labeling, and related matters. More information can be found on DOH's website.