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European network of information sources for an identification system of emerging mycotoxins in wheat based supply chains

Brief description

Overall objective
The project is aimed at initiating a sustainable network of sources that will proactively provide specified key-information for a functional identification system for (re-)emerging risks (ER) for animal and human health. The project focuses on one case with regard to type of ER and production systems, being mycotoxins in European wheat based feed and food supply chains, starting from mycotoxins produced by Fusarium species up to wheat based end products.

Specific main objectives

  • Specification of the most important indicators, together with their relative importance, as derived from various influential sectors, for the mycotoxin ER identification system;
  • Identification of the most relevant information sources on the specified indicators for the mycotoxin ER identification system. Hereby, both information from expert knowledge and from a technical point of view (hard data) will be addressed;
  • Defining an information model to link technical data on Fusarium epidemics and mycotoxins, expert knowledge and information modules from indicators from the influential sectors;
  • Identification of the form and type of information needed in order to utilize the information from the identification of emerging mycotoxins system, as perceived by different groups of stakeholders;
  • Set up recommendations to bring together the specified key-information sources into a sustainable network aimed at supplying a functional mycotoxin-related ER identification system;
  • Draw generic conclusions, from the experiences gained in the case, with regard to the initiation of sustainable networks of key-information sources for other types of mycotoxin related ER and/or production chains.

Research activities
These are divided over 4 work-packages (WPs):

  • WP1: Expert information: development of an approach for retrieving expert judgement to be used in the design of an identification system on emerging mycotoxins;
  • WP2: Technical information: creation of an overview about existing technical data sources concerning mycotoxin occurrence;
  • WP3: Integration of information: evaluation and integration of knowledge gathered in WP1 and WP2 and development of a framework for information handling;
  • WP4: Stakeholders’ needs: investigation of information needs of end users with a focus on the food and feed industry, risk managers, and risk assessors.

DIALOGIK contribution

Primary cooperation partner in WP4 which is coordinated by DNV (and input into WPs 1-3); WP4 will organise two one-day workshops with end users:

  • Risk managers and risk assessors:
    What are the essential information needs of scientific experts and decision-makers? Are there particular information needs at the interface of assessment and management? What are the needs/expectations with regard to information about scientific uncertainty?
  • Food and feed industry:
    What are the main information needs of industry actors who utilise wheat in food and feed production? What do they regard as decision-relevant information? What are their needs/expectations with regard to information about scientific uncertainty?

Project partners

  • RIKILT-Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen UR, The Netherlands
  • Lantmännen, Sweden
  • DNV Research & Innovation, Norway
  • DIALOGIK, Germany
  • MATIS Food research, Innovation & Safety, Iceland
  • Nat. Lab. For Vet. Res., Portugal