EFSA Focal Point Nieuwsbrief 19 juni 2019


Reminder: EFSA Traineeship call 2019 - EFSA/NS/TR/2019/01

EFSA is looking for young graduates from all over the world interested in this unique opportunity to practice and develop their skills and competencies in different fields of EFSA‘s mission. Trainees can contribute to EFSA‘s day-to-day activities, through a rewarding and challenging experience in a multicultural environment over one year of their paid traineeship.

The EFSA traineeship call 2019 is open until Monday 1st July 2019.


Eurobarometer 91.3: Report on food safety in the EU

Publication date 7 June 2019

The report has been published on the occasion of the first World Food Safety Day.

The last Eurobarometer we carried out was in 2010 so this survey marks an important and long-awaited update in our understanding of consumer perceptions around food safety. The findings will no doubt play an invaluable role in informing our social science activities and risk communications going forward.

As with any survey of this breadth - sampling in all 28 MS with approx. 28,000 respondents- the findings are multi-layered and dense. The “Key findings” in the report gives you an at-a-glance view. The plan in the months ahead is to carry out more in-depth analysis of the results, most likely with input from external social scientists as well.

The study revealed important differences across EU countries, which are provided in detail in the report and summarised for all 28 EU Member States in special factsheets (available in English and local languages).

Selected results from the Eurobarometer survey (for the EU average):

  • The most important factors for Europeans when buying food are where the food comes from (53%), cost (51%), food safety (50%) and taste (49%). Nutritional content is slightly less important (44%), while ethics and beliefs rank lowest (19%). Overall, 41% of respondents say that they are ‘personally interested in the topic of food safety’. Just over one fifth of Europeans (22%) say that safety is their main concern when choosing food.
  • Two-thirds of Europeans (66%) have changed their consumption after receiving information about a food risk. For 33% the change was permanent; for the other 33% only for a while.
  • Changes in consumption behaviour are more common among women, those in the middle age bands, and those with higher levels of education.
  • The most frequently cited concerns are ‘antibiotic, hormone or steroid residues in meat’ (44%), ‘pesticide residues in food’ (39%), ‘environmental pollutants in fish, meat or dairy’ (37%) and ‘additives like colours, preservatives or flavourings used in food or drinks’ (36%).
  • Trust is highest in scientists (82%) and consumer organisations (79%) for information on food-related risks, followed by farmers (69%), national authorities (60%), EU institutions (58%), NGOs (56%) and journalists (50%). Fewer people trust supermarkets and restaurants (43%), food industries (36%) and celebrities, bloggers and influencers (19%).
  • Just over 2 in 5 respondents (43%) say that ‘there are regulations in place to make sure that the food you eat is safe’. Three in ten (28%) know that ‘to decide how risky something could be for you to eat, the EU relies on scientists to give expert advice’.

Re-evaluation of phosphoric acid–phosphates – di-, tri- and polyphosphates (E 338–341, E 343, E 450–452) as food additives and the safety of proposed extension of use

Publication date 12 June 2019

EFSA carried out a public consultation to engage with interested parties on questions in the fields of nephrology, mineral metabolism, cardiovascular and nutrition medicine relevant to the re-evaluation of phosphate food additives. EFSA’s scientists considered this feedback in the preparation of this scientific opinion.


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