Supervising compliance with food law regulations is the responsibility of the Provincial Governor, who is regarded as the relevant authority, and trained supervisory bodies. The Federal Ministry of Health coordinates the supervisory and monitoring activities of the authorities involved.
A "Multi-year Risk-Based Control Plan Drinking Water“ (MK-TW) helps to improve official drinking water monitoring. This control concept helps identify new areas of risk potential ahead of time, making it possible to put appropriate countermeasures into place. To do this, the proposals for annual focus campaigns are collected, ranked by experts across various institutions and worked on with regards of their feasibility and then specified further.
AGES is also involved in this complex monitoring system, conducting a risk assessment in line with scientific aspects and an analysis of data, in line with standard statistical methods to ensure excellent drinking water quality.
Private wells or springs, from which approximately 10 % of the Austrian population takes its drinking water, are not subject to public control. Owners have to carry out regular tests on water quality and on the structural situation of the water supply system themselves in their own interest.
The sale of drinking water is regulated in detail in the Austrian Food Safety and Consumer Protection Act (LMSVG) and the Austrian Drinking Water Ordinance (TWV). These laws place very high requirements on the quality and the monitoring of drinking water.
Anyone providing and selling drinking water is considered a food business in the sense of the Austrian Food Safety and Consumer Protection Act (LMSVG) and is legally obliged to have the drinking water tested on a regular basis as part of self-monitoring obligations. Only authorised officials or institutes, such as AGES, are entitled to examine and assess the drinking water and supervise and monitor water supply facilities.
Furthermore, the Austrian Food Code Chapter B1 Drinking Water lists the general requirements of the Drinking Water Ordinance in detail and complements them with indicator parameter values for parameters not explicitly mentioned in the Ordinance (such as magnesium, potassium, zinc, phosphate, etc.). It also includes regulations on officially approved treatment and disinfection processes, as well as information on how inspections are to be conducted.