EFSA consults on the evaluation of safety and effectiveness of substances used for removal of microbial surface contamination

EFSA’s Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ) Panel has published for public consultation a revision of the joint guidance document of the BIOHAZ and former AFC panels for the submission of applications on the substances to be used for removing microbial contamination from the surface of foods of animal origin.

The guidance includes data and examples of study designs for the evaluation of these substances with regard to their safety for consumers and the environment and their effectiveness in decreasing the level of microbial contamination. The guidance also indicates how the evaluation of the possible development of antimicrobial resistance triggered by decontamination agents should be carried out.

The information and data requested in this guidance concerning toxicological aspects (chapter 6) correspond to what was previously indicated in the joint AFC/BIOHAZ guidance document published in 2006.

All interested parties are asked to provide their comments in the four weeks following the date of publication of the guidance document. In line with its policy on openness and transparency, EFSA will publish on its website a summary report of the comments received and will take them into consideration in finalising its report, which will be published in early 2010.