Scientific report of the Endocrine Active Substances Task Force
Discussions within the Scientific Committee and the Advisory Forum have called for the development of a common approach within EFSA towards endocrine active substances. The aim of this report by an internal EFSA task force is to clarify the state-of-play, and provide recommendations for scientific and communication issues. Both specific issues and new regulations make it necessary to follow up on recent developments with the EU bodies, Member States, and internationally, in order to avoid diverging assessment approaches and the duplication of work. The proposed actions for EFSA are to contribute to the work in progress under the auspices of DG Environment and to continue its participation in the ongoing OECD activities in the area of testing of chemicals. The development of a generally accepted risk assessment methodology is an additional challenge due to the complexity of the issues involved. Here, the task force recommends that EFSA continues its activities aimed at developing harmonised methodologies for risk assessment of combined exposures to endocrine active substances in food. EFSA should continue to build a dialogue to develop a common strategy with the EC, other EU bodies, Member States’ Competent Authorities, international organisations and partners, as well as external experts and stakeholders on the before mentioned issues. In line with these recommendations, it is proposed that EFSA creates a working group of Panel experts and national experts to advise on prioritising the work on endocrine active substances. EFSA should also work with the experts in its Advisory Group on Risk Communications in conjunction with the communication experts from Member States, and continues to monitor and analyse media and stakeholder developments, in order to define a strategy for communications addressing both the collective group and specific endocrine active substances.