The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is the agency of the European Union (EU) that provides independent scientific advice and communicates on existing and emerging risks associated with the food chain. EFSA was established in February 2002, is based in Parma, Italy and had a budget for 2008 of €65.9 million.

The work of EFSA covers all matters with a direct or indirect impact on food and feed safety, including animal health and welfare, plant protection and plant health and nutrition. EFSA supports the European Commission, the European Parliament and EU member states in taking effective and timely risk management decisions that ensure the protection of the healthof European consumers and the safety of the food and feed chain. EFSA also communicates to the public in an open and transparent way on all matters within its remit.

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Published on: 9 January 2020

Following a request from the EU Commission, the Panel on Plant Health has addressed the pest categorisation of non‐EU isolates of potato virus X (PVX). The information currently available on geographical distribution, biology, epidemiology, potential entry pathways, potential additional impact and availability of control measures of non‐EU isolates of PVX has been evaluated with regard to the criteria to qualify as a potential Union quarantine pest. Because non‐EU isolates of PVX are absent from the EU, they do not meet one of the requirements to be regulated as a regulated non‐quarantine pest (RNQP) (presence in the EU); as a consequence, the Panel decided not to evaluate the other RNQP criteria for these isolates. On the basis of their ability to overcome potato resistance genes, PVX isolates can be divided into several pathotypes. PVX isolates that are not able to overcome resistance genes and PVX isolates that are able to overcome the Nb and/or Nx resistance genes are already present in the EU. Isolates able to overcome the Rx resistance gene have only been reported from South America. These Rx breaking isolates could potentially have an additional impact over the current situation in the EU and therefore meet all the criteria to qualify as a potential Union quarantine pest. All other non‐EU isolates, should they be introduced, are not expected to have additional impact and therefore do not meet this criterion to qualify as a potential Union quarantine pest.


© European Food Safety Authority, 2015

Pest categorisation of potato virus X (non‐EU isolates)


Published on: 9 January 2020

Following a request from the EU Commission, the Panel on Plant Health has addressed the pest categorisation of those viruses and viroids (hereafter referred to as viruses) of Solanum tuberosum and other tuber‐forming Solanum spp. (hereafter referred to as potato) which are considered to be either non‐EU or of undetermined standing based on a previous EFSA opinion. These viruses belong to different families and genera and either have an established identity or produce consistent symptoms. Plants for planting is the main pathway for entry for all categorised viruses as they can all be transmitted by vegetative propagation. Several categorised viruses have a relatively wide host range and/or are vector‐transmitted, increasing the potential for entry. The information currently available on geographical distribution, biology, epidemiology, impact and potential entry pathways has been evaluated with regard to the criteria to qualify as potential Union quarantine pest or as Union regulated non‐quarantine pest (RNQP). Since this opinion addresses specifically the non‐EU potato viruses, in general these viruses do not meet the criteria assessed by EFSA to qualify as potential Union regulated non‐quarantine pests. The following viruses meet the criteria to qualify as potential Union quarantine pest: APLV, APMMV, APMoV, ChiLCV, CYSDV, PAMV, PBRSV, PVH, PVP, PVT, PYDV, PYMV, PYV, PYVV, RCVMV, SALCV, SB26/29, ToCV, ToLCNDV, ToMHaV, ToMoTV, ToSRV and ToYVSV. With the exception of the criterion regarding the potential for consequences in the EU territory, for which the Panel is unable to conclude because of lack of information, AVB, CPSbV, PaLCrV, PapMV, PVB, PVU, SB41 and TVBMV meet all the other criteria to qualify as potential Union quarantine pest. PotLV and WPMV do not qualify as potential Union quarantine pest, since they are not reported to have any impact. For most of the categorised viruses, the conclusions of the Panel have inherent uncertainties, due to the lack of quantitative data on their impact and/or absence or limited availability of information on the biology, epidemiology and geographical distribution.


© European Food Safety Authority, 2015

Pest categorisation of non‐EU viruses and viroids of potato


Published on: 9 January 2020

The EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Flavourings was requested to evaluate 39 flavouring substances assigned to the Flavouring Group Evaluation 71 (FGE.71), using the Procedure in Commission Regulation (EC) No 1565/2000. Nine substances have already been considered in FGE.71 [FL‐no: 08.054, 08.073, 08.123, 09.037, 09.156, 09.157, 05.158, 09.235, 09.239]. The remaining 30 substances [FL‐no: 02.020, 02.050, 02.090, 02.112, 02.137, 02.156, 02.210, 05.037, 05.060, 05.070, 05.073, 05.076, 05.078, 05.102, 05.109, 05.150, 05.171, 05.179, 09.276, 09.277, 09.303, 09.385, 09.394, 09.395, 09.396, 09.397, 09.398, 09.399, 09.678 and 09.841] have been cleared with respect to genotoxicity in FGE.200Rev1 and they are considered in this revision. The substances were evaluated through a stepwise approach that integrates information on the structure–activity relationships, intake from current uses, toxicological threshold of concern (TTC), and available data on metabolism and toxicity. The Panel concluded that none of the 39 substances gives rise to safety concerns at their levels of dietary intake, estimated on the basis of the ‘Maximised Survey‐derived Daily Intake’ (MSDI) approach. Besides the safety assessment of the flavouring substances, the specifications for the materials of commerce have also been considered and found adequate, except for [FL‐no: 08.073 and 09.235]. For these two substances, data on the composition of the stereoisomeric mixture should be requested. Normal and maximum use levels should be provided for nine flavouring substances [FL‐no: 08.054, 08.073, 08.123, 09.037, 09.156, 09.157, 05.158, 09.235, 09.239]. For two flavouring substances [FL‐no: 02.020 and 05.076], the ‘modified Theoretical Added Maximum Daily Intake’ (mTAMDI) estimates are above the TTC for their structural class I. Therefore, additional information on uses and use levels should be provided for these eleven substances in order to finalise their evaluation.


© European Food Safety Authority, 2015

Scientific Opinion on Flavouring Group Evaluation 71 Revision 1 (FGE.71Rev1): consideration of aliphatic, linear, α,β‐unsaturated alcohols, aldehydes, carboxylic acids, and related esters evaluated by JECFA (63rd and 69th meeting) structurally related...


Published on: 9 January 2020

Following a request from the EU Commission, the Panel on Plant Health has addressed the pest categorisation of non‐EU isolates of potato virus Y (PVY). The information currently available on geographical distribution, biology, epidemiology, potential entry pathways and potential additional impact of non‐EU isolates of PVY, has been evaluated with regard to the criteria to qualify as a potential Union quarantine pest. Because non‐EU isolates of PVY are absent from the EU, they do not meet one of the requirements to be regulated as a regulated non‐quarantine pest (RNQP) (presence in the EU); as a consequence, the Panel decided not to evaluate the other RNQP criteria for these isolates. Populations of PVY can be subdivided into several strains and groups of isolates: strain C (PVY‐C), strain N (PVY‐N), strain O (PVY‐O) and a wide range of recombinant isolates (PVY‐recombinants) which have a worldwide distribution (including the EU). Two groups of isolates, i.e. the Brazilian (PVY‐Br) and Chilean (PVY‐Ch) isolates, are considered absent from the EU. Non‐EU isolates of PVY‐C, PVY‐N, PVY‐O and PVY‐recombinants identified so far are not expected to have an additional impact in the EU compared to the PVY isolates already present and, therefore, do not meet the corresponding criterion to qualify as a potential Union quarantine pest. The Panel is unable to conclude on the potential additional impact of isolates of PVY‐Br and PVY‐Ch in the EU territory, but these isolates meet all the other criteria to qualify as potential Union quarantine pests.


© European Food Safety Authority, 2015

Pest categorisation of potato virus Y (non‐EU isolates)


Published on: 9 January 2020

The AGRI committee of the European Parliament requested EFSA to assess the welfare of rabbits farmed in different production systems, including organic production, and to update its 2005 scientific opinion about the health and welfare of rabbits kept for meat production. Considering reproducing does, kits and growing rabbits, this scientific opinion focusses on six different housing systems, namely conventional cages, structurally enriched cages, elevated pens, floor pens, outdoor/partially outdoor systems and organic systems. To compare the level of welfare in the different housing systems and rabbit categories, welfare impact scores for 20 welfare consequences identified from the literature were calculated, taking their occurrence, duration and severity into account. Based on the overall welfare impact score (sum of scores for the single welfare consequences), obtained via a 2‐step expert knowledge elicitation process, the welfare of reproducing does is likely (certainty 66–90%) to be lower in conventional cages compared to the five other housing systems. In addition, it is likely to extremely likely (certainty 66–99%) that the welfare of kits is lower in outdoor systems compared to the other systems and that the welfare is higher in elevated pens than in the other systems. Finally, it is likely to extremely likely (certainty 66–99%) that the welfare of growing rabbits is lower in conventional cages compared to the other systems and that the welfare is higher in elevated pens than in the other systems. Ranking of the welfare consequences allowed an analysis of the main welfare consequences within each system and rabbit category. It was concluded that for reproducing does, as well as growing rabbits, welfare consequences related to behavioural restrictions were more prominent in conventional cages, elevated pens and enriched cages, whereas those related to health problems were more important in floor pens, outdoor and organic systems. Housing in organic rabbit farming is diverse, which can result in different welfare consequences, but the overall welfare impact scores suggest that welfare in organic systems is generally good.


© European Food Safety Authority, 2015

Health and welfare of rabbits farmed in different production systems