BSE Inquiry

The archived official site of the Inquiry into BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) and vCJD (variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease) in the United Kingdom is accessible here on the National Archives site. It includes the full report of the Inquiry (published October 2000), documentary evidence submitted and transcripts of oral hearings.

Codex Alimentarius

The Codex Alimentarius is a collection of international food standards and guidelines and codes of practice relating to food, food production and food safety. It has been developed and maintained since 1963 by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, under the joint auspices of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN and the World Health Organization. All standards are listed, with the texts of most available for downloading.

Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is responsible for environmental protection, food production and standards, agriculture, fisheries and rural communities in England. This section of the GOV.UK web site provides information on Defra’s activities, policies, announcements, consultations, publications and statistics.

European Commission: Food Safety: Overview

This is a section devoted to food safety on the web site of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Health and Consumers. The “Food” area contains information about food safety, labelling, and nutrition, with links to relevant legislation. There are also sections on animal health and welfare and plant health.

European Food Safety Authority

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is a European Union agency providing independent scientific advice on all matters related to food and animal feed, including Community legislation. Its web site includes press releases and newsletters, as well as the scientific opinions and guidance of the various EFSA panels and committees.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations: The Legal Office

The web site of the Legal Office of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations provides access to FAO basic texts and to several databases of treaties, laws and regulations, including: FAOLEX covering food, agriculture and renewable natural resources; FISHLEX covering foreign fishing in coastal waters; and WATERLEX covering the management of rivers, lakes and other water resources which are on national boundaries. There is also full text, with status information, of treaties deposited with the FAO, and a range of publications including the whole series to date of FAO Legal Papers Online.

Food Standards Agency

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is a non-ministerial government department created in 2000 to protect public health and consumer interests in relation to food. Information and guidance on food law and regulation in the UK can be found in the “Business Guidance” section, and legislation and codes of practice can be found via the link to “Key Regulation” on the “About Us” page.


This site provides an extensive collection of information and links relating to UK, European and international food law. It is maintained by Dr David Jukes of the University of Reading Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences.

General Pharmaceutical Council

The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) has been the regulator for pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and pharmacy premises in England, Scotland and Wales since 27 September 2010. Its web site includes information, standards, guidance and links to legislation. There are searchable online registers of pharmacies, training premises, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. The section “Raising concerns” includes determinations in fitness to practise hearings.

McLibel Trial

The libel trial between the McDonalds Corporation and two environmental activists (a postman and a gardener from London) became the longest running trial in English legal history, beginning in June 1994 and lasting 313 days. This section of the McSpotlight web site includes Mr Justice Bell’s judgment of 19 June 1997, court transcripts, a selection of legal documents relating to the proceedings, witness statements, and information about the subsequent appeal. There are also news stories and press releases up to 2006 and a few legal articles.

Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care, formed in 2003 from a merger of the Medical Devices Agency and the Medicines Control Agency. Its section of the GOV.UK web site contains information, news and documents relating to the regulation of medicines and medical devices in the UK.

Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland

The Society is the regulatory and professional body for pharmacists in Northern Ireland. Its register is searchable online. Other content includes guidance, links to legislation, the Code of Ethics, and details of the complaint procedure.