Many changes have been made in methods for checking the adulteration and misdescription of food in the 54 years of the life of the BRITISH FOOD JOURNAL. In January 1899, when the first issue appeared, it was stated that the existing laws were lamentably inadequate and faulty, and that their application must be supplemented by the power of the Press. The prime movers in the establishment of the Journal were a group of public analysts, including particularly Colonel C. E. Cassal, Mr. J. Kear Colwell and Mr. Cecil H. Cribb, who between them held appointments under the Vestries of the parishes of St. George's (Hanover Square), Kensington, Battersea, Clerkenwell, Holborn, St. Giles, Fulham, the Strand District and some Counties in the Provinces. The need for stimulating the activity of some local authorities was clear. Thus, in the year 1898, the total number of samples submitted to the County Analyst for Herefordshire was 8: 1 of milk, 4 of butter, 1 of lard, 1 of beer and 1 of whisky. The Public Analyst, the late Mr. E. W. Voelcker, F.I.C., criticised the inactivity of the County officers. His letter was considered by the Standing Joint Committee, which stoutly defended the Chief Constable and stated that there did not appear to be the slightest ground for the Analyst's strictures. (The population of Herefordshire was then nearly 116,000.) It is not recorded whether or not the Chief Constable of Herefordshire became a regular reader of the BRITISH FOOD JOURNAL in 1899.
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