BfR Annual Report 2013 - page 5

2013 was also a year when the foundations were laid for major innova-
tive projects which will shape the future activities of the institute and
be of paramount importance for risk assessment. One example is the
planned creation of a central register for cases of poisoning in order to
create a national monitoring system. In consideration of the existence
of real and perceived risks, cases of poisoning are of major signifi-
cance for public health, for risk assessment in legally stipulated proce-
dures and for the timely identification, prevention and communication
of health risks. In addition, a national poisoning register allows early
identification and realistic assessment of toxicological health impair-
ments and creates a solid basis for evidence-based risk estimation,
particularly in the event of a crisis. The systematic and harmonised
documentation of cases of suspected and actual poisoning at poison
information centres and at the BfR as well as the centralised collection
and assessment of this data is designed to substantially improve BfR's
effectivity in early detection and the health assessment of cases of
poisoning. This is also beneficial for national and regional authorities,
the industry and the poison information centres.
The BfR is also laying the groundwork for a national “Total Diet Study”
in Germany in order to prevent the loss of key data on substances in
food products. With this project the BfR works in close cooperation
with its French sister authority ANSES and complies with stipulations of
the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the World Health Organi-
sation (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United
Nations (FAO). Together with the results from consumption studies, the
data of the Total Diet Study will for the first time permit the calculation
of intake estimates for several substances such as additives and pro-
cess contaminants across the full range of relevant foods. For many
other substances like dioxins or heavy metals, uncertainties in existing
intake estimates can be reduced and the risk assessments of the BfR
improved. This wide-ranging project enjoys high priority at the BfR.
The first outcomes are expected in the year 2019.
On the following pages, this Annual Report will provide insights into
the diverse issues in which the BfR was involved during the course of
2013. The report, however, can only be seen as an excerpt. For more
in-depth, easy-to-understand and transparent information on current
topics we also refer you to our website.
Prof. Dr. Reiner Wittkowski,
Prof. Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel,
Laying the
foundations for
major innovative
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