Boiled egg

Look to Lion on raw eggs

Sir: Even though the Food Standards Agency has amended its advice so that dishes made with runny or raw eggs can now be eaten by everyone, many caterers may in busy restaurants actually prefer to use liquid egg or ready-made boiled eggs because it saves time and waste. Many supplied products (such as mayonnaise and quiche) may also contain pasteurised egg.

You might think that all pasteurised eggs are produced to the same standards, but think again. While all egg products have to comply with legal requirements, the reliance on controls only in the processing plant and through end-product testing is not as robust as having very strict standards in place throughout the chain, for example the high standards required by the British Lion Egg Products Code of Practice in relation to hygiene, biosecurity, and what goes into feed.

Furthermore, unless eggs used in egg products are produced to Lion standards, they may not come from flocks that have been vaccinated against salmonella, and may not have been subject to such rigorous hygiene controls as are required under the scheme.

By using British Lion eggs and egg products, and by insisting that products you buy containing egg are made using Lion eggs, caterers can help protect themselves against chemical or microbiological scandals that are so often in the news; furthermore, they can also use this information to inform customers who more and more want to understand the British provenance of their food.

Dr Lisa Ackerley, food safety adviser, British Egg Industry Council

Caring about sharing

Sir: Insight that promotes action is essential for every data-driven business operation, but understanding shopper preferences is the tip of the iceberg (‘Data will win at Christmas,’ Talking Shop, 18 November, p26). To meet shopper demand it is vital that retailers work closely with their suppliers to ensure that information is shared, analysed and acted upon.

Retailers that share flow of goods data with suppliers (forecasts, actual sales, stock levels, service levels etc) and suppliers that analyse, monitor and act on a daily basis, see improvements in both availability (up) and waste (down).

Like Google Trends, the entry level SKUtrak service (daily alerts and dashboards) is free and available to all supermarket suppliers.

Guy Cuthbert, Atheon Analytics