Scotland politics

MSPs approve new Food Standards Scotland watchdog

Chickens Image copyright EPA
Image caption Holyrood ministers said the new regime would allow food-related issues to be tackled with a Scottish approach

Legislation to set up a new independent Scottish food standards agency has been passed by Holyrood.

Food Standards Scotland (FSS) will cover food safety, standards, nutrition, labelling and meat inspection.

It will continue the work carried out by the UK-wide Food Standards Agency.

The FSS is being set up after UK ministers decided to move some of the agency's functions to other government departments in England.

In the wake of the horsemeat scandal, the new Scottish agency - which will be created as a result of MSPs passing the Scottish government's Food Bill - will also get powers to seize food that does not meet labelling rules.

Scottish ministers brought forward plans for FSS after the UK government moved responsibilities for nutrition and food labelling in England from the Food Standards Agency to the health, environment and food and rural affairs departments.

The Holyrood government said FFS would be, "independent, evidence-based, consumer-focused and transparent," as well as allowing a Scottish approach to be taken on food-related issues.

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