Recently identified risks and signals

The identification of emerging risks is an ongoing process. The external communication of emerging risks is a complex task, with the methods, timing and target audience being determined on a case-by-case basis. Depending on the nature of the issue, the target group may be the authority (in particular the National Food Chain Safety Office – NÉBIH), senior managers, the professional community, food businesses or the wider community, consumers interested in the issue, etc. Not only emerging risks requiring action may be communicated, but some issues may also help to promote research or be important due to their educational character, and therefore may be communicated through communication channels such as the DFI's website.

Impact of taurine on health

Previous research with taurine, a semi-essential micronutrient, indicated a correlation between blood taurine levels and health, however its impact on aging remained unknown.

Concerns about dicamba herbicide

Since 2016, dicamba has been a popular herbicide on soybeans and other genetically modified species that are resistant to the drug. Dicamba offers a solution to the problem caused by glyphosate-resistant weeds, but it also carries a number of risks.

Dietary intake of sulfites could be a safety concern according to EFSA

High dietary intakes of sulfites could be a safety concern for consumers of foodstuffs that contain the additives, EFSA’s experts concluded in their updated assessment of sulfur dioxide (E220) and sulfites (E221-228). Gaps in toxicity data meant the extent of certain adverse health effects could not be confirmed.

Methods to reduce the methane emission of dairy cattle

Researchers and scientists are actively exploring various strategies to reduce methane emissions from dairy cattle, as methane is a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. Here are some of the methods and approaches they are investigating.

Studies on the safety of ZnO nanomaterials

Over the past few years, as research has progressed further, there has been a growing interest in the study of metal zinc oxide (ZnO) nanomaterials within the field of biology, specifically in biomedicine and food safety.

Food contact materials

In the process of identifying emerging risks, we are constantly confronted with news stories that deal with food contact materials and their potential risks. Below is a summary of these news items.

EFSA has reduced the upper safe limit of vitamin B6 and selenium

EFSA reduced the upper intake limit value (UL) of vitamin B6 from 25 mg to 12 mg per day and the UL for selenium from 300 µg to 255 µg per day. The finalization of the draft evaluation for vitamin B6, in relation to which a public consultation has already been concluded, is expected in the coming months.

Ultra-processed foods may increse cancer risk

New scientific evidences support that ultra-processed foods (UPFs) may increse cancer risk. Researcher found that a 10% increase in consumption of ultra-processed food was linked to a 2% increase in being diagnosed with cancer and a 6% increase in dying from cancer.

Plant-based and vegan infant formula

Plant-based diets are not only common among adults, the trend is also gaining popularity in the feeding of children and babies. The infant nutrition category is among the most strictly regulated product area, since infants are the most vulnerable group of society and the resctricted variety of their diet makes them more exposed to any contaminants in their food.

Food safety risks posed by the consumption of sea cucumbers

Sea cucumbers are an important food item in Asian and Pacific cuisines, with China being the largest consumer. Consumption of sea cucumbers is expanding in Asia, due to a large and growing population, urbanization, increase in income. In addition, the expansion of international trade has been growing as well.

Flu that spread from wild birds to mink

A study published in the medical journal Eurosurveillance is raising global alarm as it suggests that the recent outbreak of avian flu on a Spanish mink farm stemmed from wild birds.

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