Archive of News articles



Bangkok, Thailand: First Joint MoniQA/BIOTEC/NSTDA/TU Workshop on “Effective Food Allergen Management”, 2-4 April 2012 at the NSTDA-BioTech Center Bangkok

MoniQA Association was invited to co-organise a workshop on “Effective Food Allergen Management” for Laboratories, Industry, Food Manufacturers, Authorities and Policy Makers in Bangkok, Thailand. Please see the programme at

The theoretical part is limited to 50 participants, the practical laboratory exercise is limited to 30 participants. The practical lab exercise will include demonstration and hands-on use of ELISA and DipStick assays.



Free Registration at the Joint IAM/MoniQA Workshop “Choosing the right laboratories for official control”, 4 March 2012, at Ramada Plaza Budapest Hotel

There are limited places, free registration applies to Codex delegates, IAM members and one delegate per MoniQA member institution. For details please go to

To register, please go directly to



Budapest, Hungary:  Exclusive Sponsoring Opportunity for MoniQA and IAM members only! Starting with as little as € 200!

Starting with as little as € 200.-  sponsoring at the Joint IAM/MoniQA Workshop "Choosing the right laboratories for official control", 4 March 2012, at Ramada Plaza, in Budapest, Hungary, is exclusively offered to the members of IAM and MoniQA Association only. Due to the end of the EU funding of MoniQA the organizers welcome sponsoring of the event (to be used for coffee breaks, venue, etc…) starting as low as € 200.- (any higher sponsoring amounts are also welcome!). There is room for promotion materials of sponsors to be made available to the usually 80-120 participants from about 50-60 countries. Sign up as a sponsor by contacting roland [dot] poms [at] icc [dot] or [dot] at, more details on the workshop are at



EFSA publishes calls for tenders for all its procurement needs – services, goods, works or for the purchase or rental of a building.

Calls for tenders planned for launch in 2012 under EFSA‘s Annual Work Programme for Science Procurement Projects have been published on 8 February 2012. Several topics are relevant to food safety, food security and nutrition.

For details use the following link:



UNIDO, with its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, is looking for an analytical chemist and a microbiology expert in the fisheries sector. The chemistry expert must have experience in AAS as well as in LCMSMS / GCMS methods. The microbiologist expert must have experience in Real Time PCR and other standard methods applicable in the fisheries sector.

The aim of the assignments is to guide the analysts of the Bangladesh FIQC in getting accreditation for these methods.

Interested? – Then please contact Karl Schebesta, Industrial Development Officer at UNIDO  HQ, VIC, P-O. Box 300, 1400 Vienna, Austria, Tel: +43 1 26026 3490, Fax: +43 1 21346 3490; k [dot] schebesta [at] unido [dot] org.



Free Registration at EFSA-Austria-Norway Workshop at OECD on “Key Allergens and Compositional Analysis in the Allergenicity Assessment of Genetically Modified Plants”, 21 March 2012, Paris, France

Invited speakers from the prestigious MoniQA Network of Excellence are involved in the EFSA Workshop on allergenicity assessment of GM plants. MoniQA Association Members are offered free registration at this workshop. A limited number of places are available and thus the organizer may not be able to accommodate all registrations.

The Final Programme and the Registration Form are available at



Call for speakers for the EFSA-Austria-Norway Workshop at OECD on “Key Allergens and Compositional Analysis in the Allergenicity Assessment of Genetically Modified Plants”, 21 March 2012, Paris, France

MoniQA was asked by the organizers to propose speakers for two topics to be presented at the EFSA Allergenicity Workshop in Paris

1) Biological variation of allergen concentration in (crop) plants (possibly also covering the issue of existing databases of plant allergen concentration)

2) Perspective of the food industry on allergenicity testing (introducing a perspective broader than GMO allergenicty testing)

Proposals may be sent to roland [dot] poms [at] icc [dot] or [dot] at or directly to Dr. Armin Spoek at spoek [at] ifz [dot] tugraz [dot] at no later than 16 February 2012!



Brussels, 13 February 2012 – The European Commission has today adopted a strategy to shift the European economy towards greater and more sustainable use of renewable resources. With the world population approaching 9 billion by 2050 and natural resources finite, Europe needs renewable biological resources for secure and healthy food and feed, as well as for materials, energy, and other products. The Commission's strategy and action plan, “Innovating for Sustainable Growth: a Bioeconomy for Europe”, outlines a coherent, cross-sectoral and inter-disciplinary approach to the issue. The goal is a more innovative and low-emissions economy, reconciling demands for sustainable agriculture and fisheries, food security, and the sustainable use of renewable biological resources for industrial purposes, while ensuring biodiversity and environmental protection. The plan therefore focuses on three key aspects: developing new technologies and processes for the bioeconomy; developing markets and competitiveness in bioeconomy sectors; and pushing policymakers and stakeholders to work more closely together.

More info:



Allergen Management is an important issue regarding the saftey of food. Labelling of allergens as ingredients is mandatory since severals years. However, cross contamination of allergens to “allergen-free” products cause still problems in the industry. The webinar will demonstrate the main important steps in the organisation to manage allergens and the cross contamination. Participants will get a 10 step overview to improve their allergen management after the seminar. Questions may be addressed during or after the seminar.

Date Begin: 
Thursday, 19. January 2012

Time: 10:30 CET (duration 1,5 h)
Language: English
FIS - Europe
: Dr. Sylvia Pfaff

to register go to:




The MoniQA NoE has just published its final newsletter which focuses on the MoniQA Association, the successor entity to the EU funded Network of Excellence.  You can read the newsletter online at

or download the pdf at

More information:

Previous newsletters are available at



Mycotoxins are small (low-molecular weight) secondary metabolites (products of metabolism not essential for survival), produced by some filamentous fungi and often found in food. Chemically-diverse, they can cause disease and death to man and livestock. Adverse effects include tissue damage, immuno-suppression and neurological disorders following short- (acute) or long-term (chronic) exposure. In many countries, mycotoxin contamination is addressed by legislation. Successful management of mycotoxins is, however, effected thorough knowledge of their cause and implementation of appropriate control mechanisms, which are verified through use of reliable sampling and robust analytical methods. European Union Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) data suggest that harmonisation of mycotoxin detection methods would improve compliance at regulatory and commercial limits.

Further Information on the MoniQA NoE Website:

Download the factsheet

Mycotoxins Working Group

More factsheets



The workshop, organised within the framework of the MoniQA Network of Excellence, offers a broad view on Fusarium mycotoxins in cereals and derived products. It covers overview on natural toxins, major mycotoxins and relevant toxigenic fungi, updated information on risks and regulations related to mycotoxins, various methodologies for mycotoxin analyses and method validation protocols of analyses by the experts of the mycotoxin field.

Laboratory applications for the analysis of deoxynivalenol (DON) and fumonisins in maize, extruded maize, wheat and pasta will be performed using both immunoaffinity clean-up methods and fast analysis methods. Participants will deal with sample extraction, clean up and identification of mycotoxins in cereal matrix extracts using HPLC techniques as well as with analysis by rapid test kits such as ELISA and lateral flow device. An LC-MS/MS method for simultaneous multi-toxin analysis will also be evaluated as a new approach in mycotoxin analyses.

The practical part of the four day training is open for 16 participants, and the participants will do the experiments in 4 groups (4 people in each group). This workshop is designed especially for people who want to develop skills in mycotoxin analyses and to gain experience on the validation of analytical methods which might help in selecting the right method.

Date Begin: 
Tuesday, 25. October 2011
Date End: 
Friday, 28. October 2011

Location: Ankara, Turkey

For more information and to sign up please visit the corresponding page at the MoniQA NoE website:



(Vienna, October 12, 2011) The 3rd MoniQA International Conference (September 27-29, Varna, Bulgaria) brought together more than 150 participants from around the globe to discuss food safety issues and their impact on the consumer. The event also hosted the official launch event of the MoniQA Association, a non-profit-distributing organisation dedicated to collaborative research promoting a more secure and safer food supply.

The 3rd MoniQA International Conference, held in Varna, Bulgaria (September 27-29, 2011) brought together more than 150 international stakeholders from research, industry, authorities and consumer representatives to discuss “food safety and consumer protection”. Sessions focused on risk, understanding and choice, food safety, food security and climate change, socio-economic impact of food safety regulations, allergens, emerging issues in food (such as nanotechnology) chemical contaminants and mycotoxins, research undertaken by young MoniQA scientists and food safety education curricula around the globe; all under the umbrella of the impact on consumers.

The conference also hosted the official launch event of the new MoniQA Association, a non-profit-distributing organisation dedicated to collaborative research promoting a more secure and safer food supply, which will continue the activities of the project. In early August 2011 the association was incorporated as a non profit association (a so-called “Verein”) under Austrian law. Since then, most of the partners of the distributing original MoniQA Network of Excellence consortium (2007-2012) have joined the MoniQA Association and several new members have joined the Association prior to its first MoniQA Association General Assembly, which took place in Varna on 29 September 2011. To date nearly 40 institutions from 18 countries from 5 continents have become members of the MoniQA Association.

The 3rd MoniQA International Conference featured a wide array of speakers from food safety researchers, socio-economists, regulators, representatives from food industry and retail as well as consumer representatives from around the globe.  The event follows up on earlier, highly-successful MoniQA Conferences in Rome (2008) and Krakow (2010) with inter- and cross-disciplinary activities bridging the concerns of citizens, food science and the European economy.

The conference included table-top sessions with hands-on demonstration showcasing MoniQA activities and results. A poster session highlighted selected scientific research, with a poster award ceremony at the closing ceremony of the conference. The poster prizes were awarded to: (1st) Sine Yener (HCTU, TR) for Evaluation of a commercial ELISA assay for the detection of yellow mustard in food matrices and performance characteristics; (2nd) Dorota Piasecka-Kwiatkowska (NFNI, PL) for Gluten contents in beer and consumer awareness in Poland; and (3rd) Chen Jinyao (SCU, CN) for The status and challenges of toxicological evaluation of several Chinese herbs.

Other EU-funded projects, such as Veg-i-Trade, also contributed to the scientific content of the conference. 

More information:

Slides and conference pictures are available on the conference website at

For more information about the new MoniQA Association please visit



(Vienna, 5 September 2011) The EU funded MoniQA project is a very successful Network of Excellence which involves experts from around the globe working for safer foods by harmonising worldwide food quality and safety monitoring and control strategies. With EU funding ending on 31 January 2012, the work will continue through the newly set-up MoniQA Association, membership of which is open to all organisations with a commitment to food safety and security. 

The MoniQA Association is dedicated to international collaboration and research aimed at promoting a more secure and safer food supply, its activities include:

  • Promoting the harmonisation of analytical approaches involved in food safety and quality
  • Improving the knowledge-based bio economy through participation in relevant research programmes and facilitating bilateral/ multinational research collaboration agreements
  • Providing the infrastructure for and establishing an international network for inter-laboratory validation trials for analytical methods and reference materials
  • Disseminating and providing access to validated and robust data and information for food safety through, for example, online databases
  • Sharing expertise and understanding through training courses, scientific conferences and symposia, international exchanges of researchers, technologists, engineers etc, expert consultancy,
  • Publication especially but not exclusively through Quality Assurance of Crops & Food, which is jointly offered by ICC, the MoniQA Association and Wiley-Blackwell

The Next Generation - Join Now!

Already over two thirds of the original consortium of 33 members and several MoniQA associate members have joined and we are delighted to invite all interested stakeholders to participate in our growing community as well (membership fee: 1000 € / year)  If you are interested in becoming a member, visit

Membership includes the following benefits:

  • Access to new expertise
  • Insight into new markets
  • Networking and interest representation
  • Training and CPD
  • Robust and validated information

We look forward to welcoming you becoming part of the next MoniQA Generation!


Dr. Roland E.Poms                                                                                        Dr. Anton J. Alldrick                     

MoniQA Association General Secretary                               MoniQA Association Interim President                                  

                                                               Mag. Daniel Spichtinger

                                               MoniQA Association Interim Vice-President        


Questions and comments?

Please contact Daniel Spichtinger at spichtinger [at] rtd-services [dot] com

Tel:  +43 1 3231000 -14  



The MoniQA Association is an international group of organisations dedicated to collaborative research aimed at promoting a more secure and safer food supply. Benefits for you include access to new expertise, insight into new markets, networking and interest representation, training and CPP and robust and validated information. The association is registered according to Austrian law.

For more information click on "about" and  to join click here.

At a glance

Please find attached the most important documents about the MoniQA Association for download (PDF format).

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