Development of harmonised schemes for the monitoring and reporting of Echinococcus in animals and foodstuffs in the European Union

Alveolar/cystic hydatid disease, descriptive analysis, Echinococcosis, Echinococcus granulosus, Echinococcus multilocularis, harmonised monitoring
First published in EFSA Supporting Publications
12 gennaio 2010
Last Updated
12 febbraio 2010. This version replaces the previous one/s.
External Scientific Report

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.


Harmonised schemes are proposed for the monitoring and the reporting of Echinococcus in animals and foodstuffs in the European Union. Taking into account the public health perspective, the proposal focuses on E. granulosus sensu lato and E. multilocularis, which have a significant impact on human health and both are circulating to various degrees in Europe. For E. granulosus the monitoring of intermediate hosts (sheep, goats, pigs and cattle) at slaughterhouse level through meat inspection is recommended as well as mandatory notification of any positive cases. The genotyping to subspecies level should be performed to improve the strain identification. The development of more sensitive diagnostic methods (e.g. serology), preferably to be carried out on live animals, is also recommended. The monitoring of E. multilocularis should be performed in the definitive host (fox or raccoon dog) in order to identify geographical risk areas. The use of post-mortem intestine analysis as well as the notification of any positive cases are recommended. Additional information from wildlife would be needed to determine the geographical distribution of the parasite.

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