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Food Chem Toxicol. 2009 May;47(5):915-26. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2007.12.021. Epub 2007 Dec 25.

Early identification systems for emerging foodborne hazards.

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RIKILT - Institute of Food Safety, Bornsesteeg 45, P.O. Box 230, NL-6700 AE Wageningen, The Netherlands.


This paper provides a non-exhausting overview of early warning systems for emerging foodborne hazards that are operating in the various places in the world. Special attention is given to endpoint-focussed early warning systems (i.e. ECDC, ISIS and GPHIN) and hazard-focussed early warning systems (i.e. FVO, RASFF and OIE) and their merit to successfully identify a food safety problem in an early stage is discussed. Besides these early warning systems which are based on monitoring of either disease symptoms or hazards, also early warning systems and/or activities that intend to predict the occurrence of a food safety hazard in its very beginning of development or before that are described. Examples are trend analysis, horizon scanning, early warning systems for mycotoxins in maize and/or wheat and information exchange networks (e.g. OIE and GIEWS). Furthermore, recent initiatives that aim to develop predictive early warning systems based on the holistic principle are discussed. The assumption of the researchers applying this principle is that developments outside the food production chain that are either directly or indirectly related to the development of a particular food safety hazard may also provide valuable information to predict the development of this hazard.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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