Hungarian Food Safety Office
The Hungarian Food Safety Office (HFSO) was established as the Hungarian partner institution of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in 2003 in conformity with the EU requirements. One of its priority aims is to assess the health risks derived from food and indirectly from feed, to liaise with international and Hungarian authorities, and to communicate with the public on food safety issues.
Scientific risk assessment
One of the major responsibilities of HFSO is the scientific risk assessment relating to food safety, taking into account up-to-date scientific findings of recognised international institutions. The scientific risk assessment is based on identifying potential hazards, defining their characteristics, assessing their incidence and frequency and describing the risk. HFSO is responsible for assessing risks relating to concrete events, furthermore by analysing the data of annual official inspections concerning various agricultural, technological, environmental and biological contaminants, pesticide residues and natural toxic substances in raw and processed food. Based on the risk assessment, it forwards a proposal concerning the priority of inspections in the forthcoming period and participates in international risk assessment projects relating to individual chemical and microbiological contaminants.
National and international relations
Fostering national and international relations is another important responsibility of HFSO. It is the Hungarian partner institution of the European Food Safety Authority. In addition, HFSO is the designated contact point in the EU Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF), the World Health Organization (WHO) Food Safety Emergency Network (INFOSAN Emergency) and FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius.
The role of communication
Food is a product that the vast majority comes into direct contact with day-by-day as a consumer, food maker, and customer. The third core function of HFSO is to fill the gap, in providing credible, up-to-date information for both experts and the general public concerning food safety, which also reflects the latest scientific achievements. HFSO aims to raise consumer awareness among the general public, which will enable consumers to reject products and services that are dubious from a food hygiene and food safety point of view, and to become aware of and abide by fundamental principles.
- HFSO Newsletters (published every two weeks; HU-EN bilingual publication)
- Food Safety Journal (published quarterly; table of contents in English language)
Notes and references
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