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Food Safety

Tongaat Hulett has over many decades developed a reputation as being a producer of high quality products. In order to ensure that this reputation is maintained, the company manages its maize requirements on a nongenetically modified basis using a sophisticated identity preservation system. The use of this system enables the company to meet the needs of its customers in the food industry.

In addition, ongoing attention is paid to the requirements of ISO 9001, the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point system (HACCP) and ISO 22000, in terms of quality and food safety standards at all operations. These systems are in various stages of being certified by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS).

Sugar is a natural carbohydrate sweetener of plant origin. Sugars made by plants are classified as sucrose, glucose and fructose. All three are found in varying amounts in most fruits and many vegetables. All carbohydrate rich foods, once digested, provide glucose, the primary fuel for the body. The source of the carbohydrate is not significant in a dietary context. The sucrose from sugar cane is identical to the sucrose present in fruits and vegetables.

The growing incidence in chronic diseases of lifestyle such as diabetes, cardio-vascular disease and obesity, especially in children, has focused the attention of policymakers and the media on the consumption of sugar, and the potential contribution of this essential ingredient to the diseases of lifestyle epidemic. Certain reporting on sugar consumption has led to excessive and negative speculation regarding the value of sugar as part of a balanced diet.

Eminent bodies such as the World Health Organisation and the Food and Agricultural Organisation (2003) and the European Food Safety Authority (2010) have examined the scientific evidence relating to the consumption of sugar and other carbohydrates. These bodies have concluded, from a summary of the available evidence, that sugar is not the direct cause of lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity or cancer. In fact in 2010 the International Food Information Council Foundation (IFIC) stated that “consumers can continue to enjoy modest amounts of sweetened foods and beverages as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle”.