Call for continuous collection of chemical contaminants occurrence data in food and feed 2010-2016 | Europäische Behörde für Lebensmittelsicherheit Direkt zum Inhalt

Call for continuous collection of chemical contaminants occurrence data in food and feed 2010-2016


In the framework of Articles 23 and 33 of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 EFSA has received from the European Commission a mandate to collect on a continuous basis all available data on the occurrence of chemical contaminants in food and feed In particular, in mandate M-2010-0374 the Commission summarises the scope of the continuous data collection on chemical contaminants.

After consulting with the Commission and the EFSA Network on Chemical Occurrence Data, a continuous annual call for data (deadline October each year) is issued requesting data on a list of chemical contaminants. The continuous call for data includes several contaminants for which Commission Recommendations on occurrence monitoring are in place: Commission Recommendation 2012/154/EU on ergot alkaloids, Commission Recommendation 2007/196/EC on furan, Commission Recommendation 2010/133/EU on ethyl carbamate, Commission Recommendation 2010/161/EU on perfluoroalkylated substances, Commission Recommendation 2010/307/EU on acrylamide and Commission Recommendation 2014/193/EU on cadmium.

Member States, research institutions, academia and any other stakeholders are invited to submit data on the presence of these contaminants. EFSA also welcomes data on occurrence of other contaminants in food and feed that have been analysed in Member States.

Data will be extracted from the EFSA data management system and used in future EFSA scientific opinions and reports.

Rules on use, disclosure and re-use of contaminant occurrence data in food and feed were agreed by the former Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health, section ‘Toxicological Safety of the Food Chain’ on 19 May 2010.

Call for data

National food authorities, research institutions, academia, food business operators and other stakeholders are invited to submit data on occurrence of any of the following contaminants:


Data collection

Occurrence group name
 for data submission

Process Contaminants


  • Furan[1]
  • Acrylamide[2]
  • PAHs
  • 3-MCPD esters
  • Ethyl Carbamate[3]

Organic contaminants


  • Dioxins and DL PCBs
  • Non dioxin-like PCBs
  • Brominated Flame Retardants
  • PFAS[4]
  • Mineral oil hydrocarbons
  • Melamine and analogues



  • Nitrates in vegetables and other food commodities
  • Cadmium
  • Lead
  • Arsenic (inorganic and total)
  • Mercury (methyl mercury and total mercury)
  • Fluorine in feed
  • Nitrite in feed



  • Aflatoxins (B1 in feed and B1 and Total in food, M1 in dairy)
  • Ochratoxin A
  • Deoxynivalenol (and acetylated derivatives)
  • Zearalenone
  • Fumonisins
  • Patulin
  • T-2 and HT-2
  • Nivalenol
  • Ergot alkaloids[5]

Inherent plant toxins


  • Opium alkaloids in poppyseeds
  • Pyrrolizidine alkaloids
  • Glucosinolates in feed
  • Tropane alkaloids
  • Inherent plant toxins in feed regulated by 2002/32/EC[6] or not yet regulated
    • Free Gossypol
    • Hydrocyanic acid (feed and food)
    • Theobromine
    • Ricin
    • Abrin
    • Crotin I

Organochlorine compounds


  • Organochlorine compounds in feed regulated by Directive 2002/32/EC[6]
    • Aldrin
    • Dieldrin
    • Camphechlor
    • Chlordane
    • DDT
    • Endosulfan
    • Endrin
    • Heptachlor
    • Hexachlorobenzene (HCB)
    • Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH-alpha, beta and gamma isomers)

[1] Commission Recommendation 2007/196/EC on the monitoring of the presence of furan in foodstuffs; [2] Commission Recommendation 2010/307/EU on the monitoring of acrylamide in food; [3] Commission Recommendation 2010/133/EU on the prevention and reduction of ethyl carbamate contamination in stone fruit spirits and stone fruit marc spirits and on the monitoring of  ethyl carbamate levels in these beverages; [4] Commission Recommendation 2010/161/EU on the monitoring of perfluoroalkylated substances in food; [5] Commission Recommendation 2012/154/EU on the monitoring of the presence of ergot alkaloids in feed and food; [6] Directive 2002/32/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 May 2002 on undesirable substances in feed

If data providers are willing to submit data on any other chemical contaminants not listed in the above table, a more detailed list of the data collection groups is shown in this Excel file:

Submitted data should be compliant with the Standard Sample Description (SSD) agreed between EFSA and the EU Member States and published in January 2010 ( ). The nature of the food samples should be always defined according to the catalogue “FOODEX” and be reported in the variable EFSAProdCode. Please, note that the catalogue “MATRIX” is of specific interest in reporting Pesticide Residues and its use is optional in the context of this call for data (use the available XXXXXXA code in the variable prodCode when MATRIX catalogue not available or applicable).

SSD compliance of data not generated according to this standard can be obtained in the following ways:

  1. through appropriate mapping in case of data existing in database form or
  2. using the provided excel sheets (simplified format) in case of manual entry.

Please, note that the simplified excel sheets insert text instead of codes when choosing from a standard catalogue. They need therefore further processing in EFSA to be transformed into fully compliant files.

Data can be submitted in electronic format (XML) or in the simplified Microsoft Excel reporting format. Electronic transmission in XML format is strongly recommended. The XML schema to validate the XML message can be downloaded from (file: StandardSampleDescription.xsd).

More details on how to submit the occurrence data can be found at and in the Guidance on Data Exchange ( .

The “Guidance on Standard Sample Description” and the “Generic Reporting Format” are generally applicable. For some contaminant groups listed in the same web page, specific additional rules are applicable. These are reported as instruction files and specific excel formats. The specific formats are not deviating from the general SSD, they only prescribe different status (optional/mandatory) for some fields and may restrict the catalogues to only the applicable entries.

Deadline for transmitting data: 1 October each year.

Contact details

Data should be transmitted using the EFSA web interface “Data Collection Framework (DCF)” ( In order to receive access to the DCF web interface please contact data.collection [at]

In case data are compiled using the simplified excel file, they cannot be transmitted using the DCF web interface. In this case data should be sent to the e-mail address (data.collection [at]

Please address any technical inquiries regarding the reporting of data to data.collection [at]

(modified January 2015)