MoniQA Association facilitated participation of external experts in technical meeting on strategies to resolve aflatoxin problems in the Balkan region (4th/5th April 2013)

A Regional Expert Advisory Working Group Meeting was held in Jahorina, Bosnia on: Risk Assessment, Risk Management and Control related to Aflatoxins in South Eastern Europe, 4th/5th April 2013.

The meeting was called upon by the Ministers of Agriculture of the Balkan region, which was recently affected by aflatoxins in maize and milk. The aflatoxin issue had also spread to West European trading partners. The meeting was organised by the South Eastern Europe Regional Rural Development Standing Working Group based in Skopje, Macedonia. Approximately 30 participants from Balkan countries attended the meeting. Two external experts, Frans Verstraete (European Commission, DG-SANCO, Brussels, Belgium) and Hans van Egmond (RIKILT Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen UR, the Netherlands) were found to be available to attend the meeting, after an urgent call from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations through the Network of the MoniQA Association. The meeting resulted in recommendations that were immediately presented to the joint ministers to enable management decisions and adequate measures to resolve the aflatoxin problems in the Balkan region. The day after the meeting these recommendations were ratified at the political level.

The case shows how the MoniQA Association can successfully provide expertise from its members at short notice, in case of emerging food and feed safety issues.

A big Thank You to the two experts!

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