EFSA Science Colloquia aim to achieve a better understanding of the fundamental scientific issues related to risk assessment on food and feed and are therefore organised in a way to provide ample opportunity for an interactive exchange of expert views. To that end the Science Colloquia are sufficiently informal to allow for substantial debates if needed. However, at the same time, they are adequately structured and managed to enable participants to reach conclusions and make recommendations, as appropriate. The meeting on the development of food-based dietary guidelines was the fifth in this series of Science Colloquia.
EFSA has been asked by the European Commission to provide guidance for the translation of nutrient-based recommendations for a healthy diet into food-based recommendations. Before addressing this question by the EFSA scientific panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA), it was felt useful to organize a colloquium with scientists at the academic, regulatory and private sector levels to have an open scientific debate on the state-of-the-art of scientific approaches for developing food-based dietary guidelines (FBDG). The colloquium had the following objectives:
- to discuss the state-of-the-art of scientific approaches for the development of FBDG;
- to review the advantages and limitations of various approaches for the development of FBDG;
- to provide some conclusions which could be considered by the NDA Panel for developing guidance on suitable approaches for the translation of nutrientbased dietary advice into food-based dietary recommendations.
Around 70 participants representing relevant expertise in the field participated in an interactive exchange of expert views (see annex 1 and 2 for the programme and list of participants). After some introductory presentations providing an overview of FBDG and examples of their use in various countries presentations are attached as annex 3), participants were split up in small discussion groups (DG) to debate various aspects of the development of FBDG and reported back to the plenary session.