The Food Standards Agency has a statutory objective to protect public health and consumers' other interests in relation to food and drink. However, we are aware that excessive or unclear regulations can place a burden on business, the public sector and civil society groups (such voluntary groups, charities and not for profit organisations) and so hinder effective delivery of the intended benefits.
We implement regulations using our Framework for Policy Making, which sets out the factors the FSA considers when deciding on regulatory intervention and the different options available. We continually evaluate our performance against this framework – more details can be found below.
The FSA reducing regulation programme is about making regulations easier for business, the public sector and civil society groups to understand and comply with without compromising public health. The Government has set out its approach to reducing regulation in its publication 'Reducing Regulation Made Simple'. We recognise the importance of this agenda and, in October 2010, the FSA Board agreed to participate in the One-in One-out initiative, and in January 2011 to sunsetting of FSA legislation.
The FSA's current statement of new regulation lists all new domestic regulations being implemented between 1 July and 31 December 2011. It also reports on the FSA’s overall One-in, One-out position as at the end of December 2011, where we are forecasting a net reduction of the burden on business of £130,000.
The FSA's 'Framework for Regulatory Decision Making', which we originally published in December 2006, was revised in March 2010 in line with feedback from FSA policy makers and respondents to two public consultations. We are grateful to everyone who gave us feedback.
The document has been shortened but still retains all the key principles. The title has also been revised to 'A Framework for Policy Making in the Food Standards Agency'.
We will review the document again in 2012.
The Government's Statutory Code of Practice for Regulators (the Regulators’ Compliance Code) came into force in England on 6 April 2008. The Code seeks to embed a risk-based, proportionate, targeted approach to regulatory inspection and enforcement. The FSA has published a Statement of Compliance that we believe reflects how we comply with the Code.
On 7 April 2011, the Government launched the Red Tape Challenge website to get comments from business and the public on the stock of legislation. The aim of the Red Tape Challenge is to reduce the regulatory burden on businesses by reducing the number of statutory rules and regulations in force. The Red Tape Challenge website can be found via the link below.
On 6 May 2011, most of the FSA’s legislation was published on the Red Tape Challenge website and remained there until 2 June 2011.
The FSA has a number of initiatives being delivered under the Red Tape Challenge, which can be found in the 'Red Tape Challenge initiatives' section below.