Annual report of the Emerging Risks Exchange Network 2015
EFSA established an Emerging Risks Exchange Network (EREN) to exchange information between EFSA and the MSs on possible emerging risks for food and feed safety in 2010. The Network is currently composed of delegates from 22 Member States and two EFTA countries (Norway and Switzerland) designated through the Advisory Forum of EFSA and observers from the European Commission, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO). The Network met twice in 2015. A total of 13 potential emerging issues were presented and assessed. All 13 issues discussed originated from the EREN members. The issues discussed were related to occurrence of chemical hazards, microbiological hazards, biotoxins and allergens. Two issues assessed were associated with new consumption trends. EREN concluded that 11 issues were to be considered as emerging issues. Recommendations for follow up actions were provided, such as (i) EFSA should monitor the issue, (ii) generation of data is needed, (iii) EFSA should consult other bodies such as European sister agencies or the Stakeholder Consultative Group on Emerging Risk (StaCG-ER). The networking of organisations of MSs active in the field of emerging risks identification has been shown to greatly facilitate the exchange of information and expertise.