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The case study reports that the use of GHB and GBL is generally low in the EU, although there is evidence of it being more common in some sub-populations, settings and geographical areas e. Nevertheless, the associated health costs are relatively high. Accidental overdoses occurring in recreational nightlife settings account for a substantial proportion of the overall drug-related emergencies reported by ambulance or hospital services in some European cities. Drugnet Europe is also available in downloadable PDF format, for printing or offline browsing.

The newsletter provides regular and succint information on the Centre's projects and activities to a broad readership. EN Search. Advanced search. It also demonstrated the difference in approach between the setting of standards for food of animal origin and food of plant origin and the importance of effective and coordinated communication between all of the parties involved, particularly food safety and public health authorities.

The Commission published a document on the lessons learned from the outbreak in including a detailed action plan on steps it planned to put in place to better prepare and deal with such incidents, should they arise in the future. Just as past food safety crises have shaped the development of EU legislation, it would be naive to think that, in spite of the improved standards of food safety in the EU, there will not be future food safety crises.

The Chinese melamine scandal in and is a good example of a crisis that would have been difficult to predict in advance. The reasons for this scandal are, with the benefit of hindsight, clear — fraud. The adverse health effects associated with this practice first manifested themselves in the USA in March to May where thousands of dogs and cats died after going into kidney failure. In the EU, in May , the Commission requested member states to put in place reinforced monitoring for imports of wheat gluten from China and sought advice from the EFSA on the risks posed by food and feed contaminated with melamine.

However, in September the Commission was made aware of widespread melamine adulteration of infant milk formulae in China. This resulted in very severe health effects in children with a reported six deaths due to kidney failure, children affected, and 50 hospitalized. Thresholds for melamine were laid down in light of advice given by the EFSA 77 and testing of defined foodstuffs at point of import was made mandatory. In light of member states' findings of melamine contamination of soybean meal and ammonium bicarbonate from China used as a raising agent in the food industry the existing safeguard measure was strengthened in December to include ammonium bicarbonate and to feed and food containing soya and soya products.

This drug is not permitted to be used in horses in the EU intended for food production as it does not have an MRL established in the EU 92 and treated animals are meant to be identified as such in their equine identification document horse passport 93 and excluded from the food chain.

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Trying to predict and prevent the next potential food or feed safety crisis is difficult, though the current regulatory framework and systems for information exchange in the EU have facilitated that challenge. Previous crises have taught us of the importance of being vigilant and having systems in place to survey and identify trends and possible areas of concern.

Adult vaccination against tetanus and diphtheria: the European perspective.

In this respect reviewing scientific literature is a useful way to identify potential food safety problems from unexpected sources. Two recent examples include the gutter oil phenomenon in China — the use of illicit cooking oil that has been recycled from waste oil collected from restaurant fryers, drains, grease traps, and slaughterhouse waste 97 and the illegal use of human antiviral agents in poultry. In order to have stakeholder input into its policies on food safety, the Commission has established the Advisory Group on the Food Chain, Animal and Plant Health 99 comprising 45 stakeholder organizations in the EU representing farmers, the food industry, retailers, and consumer organizations to advise it on, inter alia , food and feed safety issues.

Similarly, the EFSA has established a stakeholder consultative group on emerging risks through which the Authority consults stakeholders such as consumers and food producers on the issue of emerging risk identification.

Adult vaccination against tetanus and diphtheria: the European perspective.

Looking at the longer term, in the Commission launched a scoping study entitled Delivering on EU Food safety and Nutrition in — Scenarios of future change and policy responses. This very comprehensive review identified a number of elements which could have a potential impact on food safety in the EU. These include a potential increased risk of disease transmission from animals to humans, environmental pollution contaminating the food chain, unintended consequences of new and emerging food chain technologies, possibilities for bioterrorism and sabotage of food supplies and the ever present threat that food safety mechanisms can fail, with the consequences being amplified by increasingly complex food supply chains.

Food and, in particular, the microbiological contamination of food, is a contributory source to this phenomenon.

The potential adverse impact of AMR on human health is significantly greater than all of the topics previously discussed in this paper. WHO, in its global report on surveillance of antimicrobial resistance, estimated that the burden of AMR in the human population in the EU to be 25 deaths per year out of a population of million. In the USA, the estimate was 23 deaths population million.

Recognizing the fact that increased use of antimicrobial drugs is associated with increased rates of development of resistance in bacteria and identifying the potential for resistance to be transferred from animals to man, the Commission in the late s progressively put in place a number of measures with the aim of reducing the development of AMR. The first steps began with the phasing out of the use of antimicrobials in food producing animals for performance enhancement increased feed conversion efficiency on the basis of the precautionary principle 38 and scientific advice , with the process being completed by The zoonoses Directive 62 introduced requirements for all member states to monitor AMR in Salmonella and Campylobacter in isolates from poultry and pigs with further guidance on Salmonella monitoring provided in In , the Commission mandated the European Medicines Agency EMA to develop a harmonized approach for the collation and analysis of data on the use of antimicrobials in animals in order to provide data on possible risk factors that could lead to the development and spread of AMR in animals.

Other studies in Denmark and the Netherlands have drawn the same conclusion.

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Other key actions on the veterinary side it also covers human use of antimicrobials have included the publication of an updated decision on harmonized monitoring of AMR in commensal bacteria which is relevant given the evidence that oral antimicrobials increase AMR in commensal E. There is also an ongoing revision of the legislation on veterinary medicines and medicated feedingstuffs, the former legislation having an objective of facilitating the development of new antimicrobial therapies, one of the key issues identified in the O'Neill review.

Member states' measures to encourage prudent use will be the subject of a series of fact finding missions carried out by the Commission in The EU is not alone in recognizing the threat of AMR and addressing it at the highest political level. Other international organizations are also addressing the problem. As previously stated, Codex Alimentarius has developed guidelines for risk analysis of foodborne antimicrobial resistance. Similarly the OIE has produced several reports on the topic and its latest report includes similar recommendations to those proposed in the Commission's action plan.

Regarding the key question as to whether all of these various initiatives are actually achieving the desired effect, i. The report also noted that the level of fluoroquinolone ciprofloxacin resistance in Campylobacter jejuni was higher among isolates from imported broiler meat compared to Danish broiler meat. The same pattern was seen for resistance in indicator bacteria enterococci and E. These data suggest that measures taken in the EU as a whole or in individual member states must be matched by similar actions from our trading partners if a reduction in AMR is to be achieved.

Past food and feed safety crises have shaped the development of EU food law. The current flexible regulatory framework and support mechanisms underpinning its operation mean that the EU is now in a much stronger position to identify and address food and feed safety incidents and prevent their escalation into crises than was the case previously. On the basis of past experience, unexpected or unforeseen events are most likely to trigger food and feed safety crises. Consequently, preparedness for such events will require ongoing investment in active and passive surveillance systems allied with vigilance on the part of all of the players in the feed and food chains, effective communication, sharing of intelligence and coordination of activities between member states and European institutions.

In this respect the EU is well placed to face future challenges. Volume 8 , Issue The full text of this article hosted at iucr.


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John D. The opinions expressed and arguments employed in this publication are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its Member countries. Tools Request permission Export citation Add to favorites Track citation.

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Adult vaccination against tetanus and diphtheria: the European perspective.

Drivers for the development of food safety legislation in the EU — hormones, transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, and dioxins In the EU, a body of food law has been built up over the years with the express aim of facilitating the production and marketing of safe food. Preparing for the unexpected; food fraud and the need for surveillance Just as past food safety crises have shaped the development of EU legislation, it would be naive to think that, in spite of the improved standards of food safety in the EU, there will not be future food safety crises.

Predicting future food safety challenges Trying to predict and prevent the next potential food or feed safety crisis is difficult, though the current regulatory framework and systems for information exchange in the EU have facilitated that challenge.

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Conclusion Past food and feed safety crises have shaped the development of EU food law. Agricultural trade in EU gains in commodity exports. Google Scholar. Crossref Google Scholar. PubMed Google Scholar. Wiley Online Library Google Scholar.

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