The European Parliament has voted to give national food regulators authority to insist that some small food manufacturers follow HACCP health procedures.

MEPs have amended liberalising proposals from the European Commission that all micro-businesses in the food sector should be exempted from EU legislation insisting on such checks.

While accepting that for many small businesses, such a requirement was unnecessary and burdensome red tape, some small food businesses pose real health risks, the European Parliament found.

As a result, MEPs want national authorities to "have more room to decide whether micro - or even medium sized companies should stick to the HACCP procedures…on the basis of regular hazard analysis".