European Food Safety Authority
One of the most important partners of AGES in Europe is EFSA (European Food Safety Authority).
The European Food Safety Authority is the keystone of European Union (EU) risk assessment regarding food and feed safety. In close collaboration with national authorities and in open consultation with its stakeholders, EFSA provides independent scientific advice and clear communication on existing and emerging risks.
EFSA’s Advisory Forum connects EFSA with the national food safety authorities. Its members represent each national body responsible for risk assessment in the EU, Iceland and Norway, with observers from Switzerland and the European Commission. It is chaired by EFSA’s Executive Director. The Forum is at the heart of EFSA’s collaborative approach to working with the EU Member States. Through it, EFSA and the Member States can join forces in addressing European risk assessment and risk communications issues. Members use the Forum to advise EFSA on scientific matters, its work programme and priorities, and to address emerging risk issues as early as possible.
Focal Points act as an interface between EFSA and the national food safety authorities, research institutes, consumers and other stakeholders. The Focal Point network is made up of members from all 27 EU Member States, Iceland and Norway, as well as observers from Switzerland and (potential) EU candidate countries.
The Focal Points support their Advisory Forum Members in the practical implementation of activities related to networking and scientific cooperation, including:
• ensuring the exchange of scientific information between national authorities and EFSA, e.g. through the Information Exchange Platform (IEP);
• supporting competent organisations under Article 36 of EFSA’s Founding Regulation;
• promoting the Expert Database and cooperation at national level; and
• raising EFSA’s scientific visibility and outreach in Member States.
EFSA and its units are further supported by scientific networks. The networks consist of national experts with expertise in the fields covered by the network. Their aim is to facilitate scientific cooperation in the fields of EFSA’s remit by coordinating activities, exchanging information, developing and implementing joint projects and exchanging expertise and best practices. In most of the networks are experts from AGES involved.
The Austrian representative in the Advisory Forum is Dr. Roland Grossgut. The Austrian Focal Point is DI Johann Steinwider. Both are from the Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety, Division for Data, Statistics and Risk Assessment. Contact: email@example.com