Overview on current practices of meat inspection in the EU
The present document has been produced and adopted by the bodies identified above as authors. In accordance with Article 36 of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002, this task has been carried out exclusively by the authors in the context of a grant agreement between the European Food Safety Authority and the authors. The present document is published complying with the transparency principle to which the European Food Safety Authority is subject. It may not be considered as an output adopted by EFSA. EFSA reserves its rights, view and position as regards the issues addressed and the conclusions reached in the present document, without prejudice to the rights of the authors.
This report summarises the State of Art of meat inspection in the European Union (EU) and six selected exporting countries outside the EU. The elements of meat inspection in EU are specified in Regulation 854/2004 which also opens up for modifications of the existing meat inspection practices if certain requirements are met. The report is based among others on 1) results of a workshop aiming at identifying the aims of different elements of meat inspection, 2) information obtained through a questionnaire survey mailed to all EU member states as well as selected exporting countries outside the EU, 3) FVO inspection reports.
Traditional meat inspection according to Regulation (EC) 854/2004 is in principle conducted in most member states. Only Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands have modified inspection programmes in place for the part of their pig production that fulfils the requirement for integrated production systems. Several member states expect to be introducing similar meat inspection practices, in particular for pigs within the coming years.
Both the data from the questionnaires and the summary of results of FVO inspections confirm that most member states in principle meet the requirements in Regulation (EC) 854/2004. However, the regulation is not necessarily fulfilled with respect to all detailed requirements.