Technical specifications on harmonised epidemiological indicators for biological hazards to be covered by meat inspection of farmed game
In this report, harmonised epidemiological indicators are proposed for foodborne biological hazards to public health that are related to farmed game and meat thereof and that can be addressed within meat inspection. These hazards include Salmonella, Toxoplasma, Trichinella and Mycobacterium in farmed wild boar and deer. An epidemiological indicator is defined as the prevalence or concentration of the hazard at a certain stage of the food chain or an indirect measure of the hazard that correlates to the human health risk caused by the hazard. The indicators can be used by the European Commission and Member States to consider when adaptations in meat inspection methods may be relevant and to carry out risk analysis to support such decisions. It is foreseen that the indicators will be used in the revised meat inspection system for farmed game meat outlined in the European Food Safety Authority scientific opinion, particularly to help categorise slaughter batches, animals and slaughterhouses according to the risk related to the hazards and process hygiene or to enable surveillance for the possible emergence of the hazard. Depending on the purpose and the epidemiological situation, risk managers should decide on the most appropriate indicator(s) to use, either alone or in combination, at national, regional, slaughterhouse or farm/herd level. Member States are invited to report data generated by the implementation of the indicators in accordance with Directive 2003/99/EC. The proposed indicators should be regularly reviewed in light of new information and the data generated by their implementation.