EFSA in 2016: making sure that food is safe for European consumers
EFSA has published its Annual Activity Report, presenting the results of its work carried out in 2016. From providing scientific risk assessments to implementing new methodologies and developing guidance documents, EFSA has addressed a wide range of issues in the field of food safety. The year 2016 also brought many changes and new aspects to EFSA’s work.
EFSA Strategy 2020: “Trusted science for safe food”
EFSA completed the strategic review of its work and published the EFSA Strategy 2020 as its new guiding document, introducing the mission statement “Trusted science for safe food”. The document translates the key priorities of EFSA’s work into strategic objectives, illustrating how the Authority will face the opportunities and challenges of the coming years. EFSA has already applied the Strategy 2020 approach in this latest annual report.
It was a busy year for EFSA, with close to 500 scientific outputs published. EFSA’s scientists and experts completed important work in fields such as antimicrobial resistance, microplastics and nanoplastics in food, the re-evaluation of food colours, novel and traditional food, the cumulative risk assessment of pesticides and dietary reference values for vitamins. EFSA also provided advice in relation to food-related outbreaks such as lumpy skin disease, avian influenza and Xylella fastidiosa.
What was new in 2016?
There were many firsts last year, in particular in the areas of methodology and communication. The Knowledge Junction was introduced as an open repository for the exchange of evidence used in food and feed safety risk assessment. EFSA added a number of data collections to its data warehouse, where they are now available to public.
In the area of communication, EFSA opened a new chapter by migrating its flagship scientific publication, the EFSA Journal, to the international scientific publisher Wiley. This has improved overall publishing quality, efficiency and clarity when sharing EFSA’s work. With thematic Twitter accounts on scientific topics, as well as personal accounts for senior staff, EFSA has also increased its outreach on social media.
For a full account of EFSA’s achievements in 2016, please see the Annual Activity Report.