The Food Standards Agency is setting up a task force to look at recent food contamination incidents.

The task force, which will be made up of representatives from the food industry, enforcement authorities, consumer organisations and independent members, will advise on contamination incidents in general.

Recent incidents of the illegal and potentially cancer causing food dyes Sudan 1 and Para Red finding their way into foods has forced the issue.

Speaking at the agency’s board meeting yesterday, acting chair, Julia Unwin, said that the task force would consider ways of strengthening controls in the food chain to reduce the risk of future contamination incidents.

The task force will also identify the most effective ways of managing food contamination incidents if they occur.

In the first phase of its work, the task force is expected to gather information from the food industry and enforcement bodies on the best ways to reduce incidents.

A second phase will look at the issues related to effectively managing incidents.