Responsibility for feed safety
Feed safety is the responsibility of feed business operators. Within their own HACCP concept (hazard analysis and critical control points system), they have to analyse and assess the risks that certain feed may pose to animal health, human health and the environment. The assessment focuses on the probability and severity of the occurrence of chemical, physical and microbiological health risks. The risks identified in the feed chain at an earlier stage must be avoided, eliminated or at least reduced. The HACCP concept goes beyond the implementation of normal quality standards. It may also form an integral part of the quality manual of the feed business operator. Using the HACCP concept, a higher level of feed safety is achieved. The use of HACCP principles is not required for primary production of feed.
Before authorising the placing on the European market and the use of certain feed products, such as feed additives, the hazard analysis must be carried out by an independent expert institution, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). The EFSA risk assessment provides a scientific basis on which risk managers formulate new legislation. The European Commission and the Member States manage the risk through the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health by establishing lists of substances allowed to be used in animal nutrition.
There are so-called positive and negative lists. Positive lists are, for example, the catalogue of feed materials, the list of feed additives authorised to be placed on the market and used in the EU and the dietetic feed list. Negative lists are, for example, the list of products for which the placing on the market and use for animal nutrition purposes is prohibited, the list concerning the ban on feeding processed animal proteins to farmed animals (with possible derogations), the ban on feeding catering waste to farmed animals other than fur animals.
Prohibitions or restrictions on the use of certain substances or products in the feed chain are also an integral part of other sets of legislation, such as legislation on feed additives or GMO legislation.