Working with Europe’s neighbours to harmonise food safety approaches
The Jordan Food and Drug Administration (JFDA) hosted three EFSA representatives for a workshop on “Knowledge and best practices in risk assessment and risk communication” on 28 and 29 April 2015.
The event was part of the EFSA European Neighbourhood Programme 2014-2016, which promotes the understanding of EFSA’s work, facilitates the sharing of expertise and creates information exchange mechanisms with Europe’s neighbours. The programme was developed by EFSA and the European Union (EU) under the European Neighbourhood Policy. The policy aims to create mutually beneficial relationships between the enlarged EU and its neighbours, and to strengthen prosperity, stability and security of all.
Increasing cooperation beyond the EU
The workshop aimed to increase the cooperation between EFSA and the JFDA and to strengthen the risk assessment and risk communications capacity of Jordan. Participants came from various organisations in Jordan that are responsible for food safety.
The workshop was very timely as Jordan is currently in the process of adopting new food safety legislation which the country plans to harmonise with the EU.
EFSA speakers covered topics such as risk assessment principles, risk ranking, emerging risks, food safety emergencies, EFSA’s activities on traceability and risk communications. Dr Mohammad Al-Khraisha, Food Director at the JFDA, shared Jordan’s experiences and ‘lessons learned’ during food crises and emergencies.
According to Dr Al-Khraisha, workshop participants were extremely positive about this opportunity to exchange views and experiences on food safety issues. “This workshop has to be considered as the first step in our cooperation and it should be followed by many others.”
This type of initiative strengthens relationships with Europe’s neighbours in the field of food safety. It fosters partnerships to develop and harmonise risk assessment methodologies. It also promotes coherence and good practice in risk communication, in particular on emerging risks and during crises.