EFSA procedures for responding to urgent advice needs - 03 May 2012

Frage Nr.: EFSA-Q-2011-00397
Issued: 3 Mai 2012
Bericht (0.1 Mb)

Abstract

This document provides guidance on the practical arrangements necessary to ensure responsiveness of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to the need for urgent advice on food and feed safety. It sets guidance on the identification of urgent situations, introduces two internal response levels, explains how the urgent advice structures are activated, which steps must be followed, who the actors are, and their tasks. The document describes Operational Facilities and other resources for dealing with requests for urgent advice.


Zusammenfassung

This document provides guidance on the practical arrangements necessary to ensure responsiveness of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to the need for urgent advice on food and feed safety. The document is separate to the EFSA Business Continuity Plan (BCP).

A situation requiring urgent advice of EFSA typically arises where the potential risk resulting from food and feed has caused or is likely to cause widespread concern to consumers, farmers or other stakeholders with a direct interest in the production, supply or use of food, and where the exact nature of the risk is not immediately apparent or the impact is potentially large.

Within the mandate of EFSA, this document sets guidance on the identification of urgent situations, introduces two internal response levels, explains how the urgent advice structures are activated, which steps must be followed, who the actors are, and their tasks. The document describes Operational Facilities and other arrangements relevant for dealing with requests for urgent advice.

In order to prepare EFSA staff for handling situations requiring urgent advice following the procedures outlined in this document, regular training events are arranged both internally and together with Member States (MS) and other stakeholders. The training consists of workshops, table-top as well as command post simulation exercises, focussing on the various aspects of handling food/feed crises.

To ensure EFSA’s ability to respond to requests for urgent advice, even in times of unusual disruption of business, the processes of the EFSA BCP have been established. These also assist in managing disruption caused by high demands on EFSA resources, including staff, during prolonged food/feed crises.

A successful framework for action leading to the production of urgent advice by EFSA should be characterized by flexibility and the capacity to adjust to the unique circumstances on a case-by-case basis within the framework outlined in this document and taking into account the accumulated experience of dealing with similar situations in the past. This document is therefore a living document to be reviewed and updated regularly in the light of experience.


Veröffentlicht: 22 Mai 2012