Food and Feed Safety


The production and consumption of food is central to any society, and has economic, social and, in many cases, environmental consequences. Nutrition is the most direct way of affecting human health, and in order to to insure European consumers´ health, high food safety standards need to be kept and protected. Questions of food and feed security affect broad areas such as animal nutrition, the use of biotechnologiy, nutrition labelling, novel food, as well as chemical and biological safety. While developing food policy, health protection has to be prioritised, anyhow the above issues need to be taken into account as well. Additionally several parts of the food chain are affected by state and quality of the environment, in particular the state of ecosystems, which indicates which important role environmental policy does play in ensuring safe food for European consumers.

Guiding Question

Does the option affect the safety of food and feed?

Relevant Policies

 The European Commission has identified food safety as one of its top priorities. The White Paper on Food Safety of January 12, 2000 sets out the plans for a proactive new food policy: modernising legislation into a coherent and transparent set of rules, reinforcing controls from the farm to the table and increasing the capability of the scientific advice system, so as to guarantee a high level of human health and consumer protection.
For more information on concrete legislative measures, please visit


DG Health and Consumers:

Web Resources

Further sources of data


Further sources of information

DG Health and Consumers:
European Food Safety Authority:
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations:

Eurostat Indicators

There are no Eurostat Structural Indicators directly related to this key question.
The following Eurostat Sustainable Development Indicators are relevant to address the key question:
-          Share of area occupied by organic farming
-          Livestock density index
-          Fish catches from stocks outside 'safe biological limits'
The following European Environment Agency Indicators are relevant to address the key question:
Grassland is an important factor of feed safety and thereby affects food safety as well:
-          Change in area and use of grasslands (Data covering EU 9 for 1975-1995)
-          Pressures on grasslands (lowland and mountain areas) (Data covering Austria, Finland, Sweden, Italy, France, Ireland, Portugal, Greece, Spain for 1999)
-          Protection of grasslands (Data covering EU 15 for 1999)

Other Official Indicators