SAMPA Newsletter – January to March 2021
Many of you have personally battled Covid infections and some have lost loved ones, colleagues and friends. Our sincere condolences to all who have suffered loss during these trying times.
Welcome all SAMPA members new and old to 2021, it’s been very busy at SAMPA HQ since January and looks set to get even busier as the year unfolds.
In order to ensure business continuity we trust that sense will prevail before more overly restrictive regulations close commerce once again, especially if we endure a 3rd wave of infections. We look forward to an accelerated vaccination program starting in April , thereby reducing infections and the vulnerability of Health Care and Essential Services workers, the elderly and infirm to the Covid virus.
It is also my sincere wish that the economy continues to recover and that travel and the hospitality sector regain their previous vigour, and that sometime in 2021 we can support our favourite sport and attend events once again.
Annual General Meeting 2021 – 5th May 2021 @ 11h00
The SAMPA AGM is scheduled to take place @ 11h00 on the 5th May 2021.
This year we will have a hybrid format, holding a physical meeting at the St Georges Hotel, Irene and simultaneously offering a Zoom virtual meeting.
Invitations together with the agenda were sent to all members last week.
In November 2020 SAMPA wrote to the NRCS to request a meeting so that SAMPA & NRCS could clarify the many questions that had arisen during the year. A meeting was finally held on the 24th March 2021.
The NRCS stated that due to Covid they had not been able to conduct as many physical factory inspections as they wanted to. To date 145 desk top and physical audits had been conducted across South Africa. 105 of these had been in the Gauteng region.
The NRCS have identified that many small and medium size facilities had significant structural and management challenges preventing them from complying with VC9100. In addition certain facilities had refused to allow NRCS inspectors access slowing the inspection process down.
Additional resource’s had been deployed to speed up physical inspections.
SAMPA members are requested to allow the NRCS inspectors access and to register with the NRCS if they have not already done so. Those SAMPA members who have been visited have reported the process to have gone smoothly.
SAMPA and NRCS agreed to develop a Q & A list which will be sent to the NRCS database and SAMPA members once complete. These should address any questions industry might still have.
NRCS – Levy
The NRCS pointed out at the meeting that any decision regarding the levy rests with the Department of Trade Industry and Competition (DTIC) and not with the NRCS. SAMPA subsequently engaged with the DTIC and I am happy to report that we received a positive response that further discussion between all affected parties will follow. The DTIC apologized and stated that the process had been considerably delayed due to Covid , as many of their team worked from home and communication had been challenging during 2020.
SAMPA eagerly awaits the DTIC to schedule a meeting for further discussions.
Agency for Food Safety
The AFS released their 2nd industry report in February 2021, which you should have received by email from AFS.
Most non compliances in the H2 2020 were packaging and POS related. This highlights that as an industry we are largely producing product that complies with R 1283.
Where sustained non-compliance has been identified firm action was taken, in one case SAPS was required to gain access to a facility and court action is pending against the vendor.
SAMPA continues to work pro-actively with AFS in the best interest of our members.
Consumer Goods Council of South Africa
SAMPA is a member of the CGCSA and we work closely with them on areas such as food waste, salt and sugar reduction, regulatory matters, food safety, packaging reduction and labelling.
Some SAMPA members are also members of CGCSA and we are able to cross pollinate ideas and inputs from a broad range of industry experts. This knowledge is brought back into SAMPA’s strategic actions by the SAMPA CEO.
AMIE (Association of Meat Importers and Exporters)
A close working relationship exists between SAMPA and AMIE. Topics of common interest are discussed and if required combined action is taken to address any issues.
The Poultry Master Plan
The poultry master plan is an initiative of the DTIC and Minister Patel.
SAMPA is part of the over-sight and working committee and made inputs into the original drafting of the Master Plan’s strategic objectives in 2019.
SAMPA represents the biggest users of MDM in South Africa and by participating we ensure that our member’s interests will be heard.
Red Meat Industry Forum (RMIF)
SAMPA is one of 13 organization’s that make up the RMIF.
Of significant importance to SAMPA is the red meat statutory levy. The levy in its current form ends in Nov 2022 and it remains unclear how the levy will be replaced or if it will fall away.
Should it fall away SAMPA will be required to find a replacement for its current funding from members. This will be discussed in more detail at the AGM in May after further discussion with the RMIF in April are concluded.
Meat Analogues (Product that use meat names but are made from non- meat ingredients)
This is currently a very small category in South Africa, but has grown exponentially in Europe and the USA over the past 5 years. Will it become a “thing” in South Africa?
Estimates are that Vegan and Vegetarian meals will be worth €84 billion in the EU by 2030.
The law in SA does not prevent the use of meat names for non-meat products, providing the product name is not misleading to the consumer. This allows a “Pea Sausage or Pumpkin Burger” to be on shelf.
The sole exception is the use of the word “Boerewors” which is specifically regulated by R 2718.
What do you think?
What to expect in 2021
Raw Processed Meat Regulation – this is a new regulation that will govern all raw processed meats
e.g. (Sausages, Burgers, Meat Balls, Grillers, Fry, Sliders, Braaiwors, Braai , Mince etc. ) and it has been in front of the Minister of DALLRD for some time. It is unclear exactly when it will be signed and become law. Once signed by the Minister it will have significant impact on the red meat industry. Inspections and enforcement will be done by the Agency for Food Safety.
SANS 885: 2020– the draft was out for comment earlier this year and once finalised it will replace the original SANS 885: 2011 – of significance will be the revised Micro standards and the removal of any compositional tables. Compositional tables moved to DALLRD and now reside in R 1283.
I look forward to seeing you all either on line or physically at the Annual General Meeting on 5th May.
Peter Gordon, CEO