Harmonisation of monitoring zoonoses, antimicrobial resistance and foodborne outbreaks
Harmonisation of monitoring and reporting of biological hazards in the European Union (EU) Member States is crucial to enable proper analyses and interpretation of the information at EU level. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has issued technical specifications for the monitoring and reporting that together with the relevant EU legislation and reports deriving from EFSA’s grant projects have importantly improved the comparability and quality of the data submitted by EU Member States on zoonoses, antimicrobial resistance and foodborne outbreaks. EFSA’s published technical specifications cover the monitoring of verotoxigenic Escherichia coli, Yersinia enterocolitica and antimicrobial resistance in food and animals as well as reporting on foodborne outbreaks. The grant project reports submitted to EFSA provide recommendations on the monitoring of foodborne parasites, Q fever and rabies as well as on the conduct of national surveys on zoonotic agents in food. These specification and reports guide the Member States in the implementation of risk-based monitoring and designing surveys in animals and food. EFSA will continue the gradual harmonisation of the monitoring of zoonotic agents in the coming years.