Food Adulteration (Metallic Contamination) Regulations


The Legislative Council completed its scrutiny of the Food Adulteration (Metallic Contamination) (Amendment) Regulation 2018 (“the Amendment Regulation”) in October 2018.  The Amendment Regulation came into force on 1 November 2019 and takes full effect from 1 November 2020 on all kinds of foods.

Taking into account the need to allow sufficient time for traders to adapt to the updated maximum levels (MLs) (including identifying alternative sources if needed) and the local testing and laboratory sector to build up testing capability based on the new MLs, the Amendment Regulation first took effect for certain types of fresh food with shorter durability and shelf life (i.e. fresh fruit and vegetable and their juice, fresh meat and edible offal of animal and poultry, aquatic animal and poultry egg) on 1 November 2019.  Given that food types other than those mentioned above normally have a longer shelf / storage life, a 12-month grace period was offered under the Amendment Regulation. The relevant grace period has ended and the Amendment Regulation takes full effect from 1 November 2020 on all kinds of foods.

Food Adulteration (Metallic Contamination) (Amendment) Regulation 2018


Technical Meeting (February 2018 – ongoing)

A series of meetings to discuss with trade and other interested stakeholders on technical issues related to the proposed amendments to the Regulations have been arranged.

5th Meeting (1 March 2019)

4th Meeting (14 February 2019)

3rd Meeting (13 June 2018)

2nd Meeting (23 March 2018)

1st Meeting (2 February 2018)

Public Consultation (6 June – 5 September 2017)

*For details regarding the Codex food classification and definitions of other food commodities, please refer to the website of the Codex Alimentarius Commission ( For example, canned food is generally referred to food products which are processed in an appropriate manner, before or after being hermetically sealed in a container.
Regarding the Codex Classification of Foods and Animal Feeds (Second Edition) (CAC/MISC 4), the revised food classification adopted by Codex (e.g. the revised fruit classification adopted in 2012) has not been incorporated in the aforementioned food classification document.