EFSA in 2015: working in the interest of European consumers
EFSA has published its Annual Activity Report 2015, detailing its achievements in the past year. Along with the account of its recent work, EFSA has published a revised version of its programming document for 2016-2019 that reflects its new strategic outlook.
Taking stock – looking ahead
EFSA delivered an impressive body of scientific work in 2015. With more than 600 scientific outputs covering issues along the entire food chain, EFSA contributed to evidence-based decision-making that helped to protect European consumers.
Key scientific outputs included the full risk assessment of acrylamide, a scientific opinion on caffeine, a re-evaluation of the safety of bisphenol A, and scientific advice on outbreaks such as African Swine Fever and the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa that is causing olive disease in southern Italy.
2015 was an important year for EFSA as it looked ahead and charted a course for the future. Preparing the groundwork for its Strategy 2020, EFSA identified key work priorities against the backdrop of anticipated opportunities and challenges.
EFSA made significant changes to the way it carries out its work. The Authority tested new methodologies in the use of scientific evidence and drafted new guidance on how to assess and communicate scientific uncertainty.
Transparency and engagement in scientific risk assessment remained key topics throughout the year. EFSA made significant progress in sharing its data by opening up its data warehouse to a growing number of stakeholders. Open meetings of EFSA’s Scientific Panels and Scientific Committee are now easier to attend – since 2015 they have been held in Brussels.
EFSA’s second scientific conference was a major milestone. Hundreds of scientists, policy-makers and academics came together in Milan to discuss how to shape the future of food safety. The conference was also a showcase for EFSA’s innovative approach to communicating its work to a broad audience.
Revised programming document
EFSA’s revised version of its Multi-annual Programme for 2016-2019 incorporates the new strategic outlook provided by EFSA’s Strategy 2020. The document will guide EFSA as it embarks on strengthening cooperation with Member States and other international partners to ensure coherence in risk assessment; incorporating transparency and openness into its scientific work; and engaging with society to increase trust in the European Union’s food safety system.