The Department of Agriculture (DA)-National Dairy Authority (NDA) said over the weekend that the Dairy Food Regulations has been crafting in accordance with the Food Safety Act is already in its finalization stage and is expected to be approved by Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala next month.
NDA Administrator Grace Cenas said, the NDA, being one of the food safety regulatory agencies (FSRA) of the Department, recently conducted consultations on the said regulations.
As the duly mandated FSRA for pasteurized liquid milk products and pursuant to the authority vested upon it by Republic Act No. 10611 otherwise known as the Food Safety Act of 2013, the NDA drafted the Dairy Food Regulations, in compliance with Sec. 26 (a) of RA 10611 and Rules 12a.2 and 12a.3, of its Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR), thereby implementing the Food Safety Act of 2013 in the production, processing, distribution and sale by the Philippine dairy industry of safe pasteurized liquid milk products as well as dairy animals.
Existing dairy farms, milk collection centers, milk processing plants and other dairy enterprises including service and input providers along the dairy value chain are given a maximum of two years from its effectivity date to fully comply with the regulations.
Dairy farms, milk collection centers, milk processing facilities and other dairy enterprises including service and input providers along the dairy value chain will have to be compliant with the regulations before they are allowed to operate such enterprises.
The Dairy Food Regulations and standards adopt the HACCP, GAP, GAHP, GMP and PNS for Fresh Milk as well as the Codex Alimentarius standards as far as practicable and suitable to Philippine dairy settings.
These regulations also give preference as well to the compliance by the dairy enterprise operators with existing laws and administrative rules and regulations, like health and environmental laws and regulations, those on animal welfare, quarantine, feeds, drugs and biologics; and consumer laws and fair trade rules.
Meanwhile, the NDA administrator also reminded dairy cattle raisers not to abuse the use of antibiotics and anti-fungal drugs, because the bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, etc. in their animals might develop anti-microbial resistance (AMR).
She added, once the microbes develop AMR, treatment will be longer and harder. According to Cenas, the NDA makes sure that milk coming from an animal which was given antibiotic does not get processed. (Joel C. Atencio)