Working Group 2 Feed Safety will integrate and collate knowledge on feed safety. Particular concerns will be the control and reduction of feed contaminants such us mycotoxins, plant-produced toxins and residues, heavy metals, harmful biological agents (particularly pathogenic bacteria) and xenobiotics, and the monitoring of carryover from feed to food. It will also be important to develop new, more reliable and more accurate analytical methods (including screening and rapid methods) to identify and monitor these contaminants. The ban on the use of growth promoters and processed animal proteins, as well as the limitations on the use of modified organism in feed and bio-fuels production, have transformed the market in vegetable-based feedstuffs, and resulted in novel feeds and feed components becoming available. These products also require authentication and health and safety verification. Furthermore anti-nutritional factors of various origin (e.g. non-starch polysaccharides and non-digestible oligosaccharides) may be present which reduce feed efficiency and may have repercussions on safety and health. Methods are therefore required to characterise the disparate plant-derived products being proposed as feed constituents and to assess their effects on cell processes and gene expression in livestock animals. Vegetable sources may also contain contaminants and degradation products that may adversely affect animal health and productivity.
Working Group 2 Feed Safety objectives:
1. Carry out a systematic literature review of issues relating to feed and food safety.
2. Identify undesirable substances in the food chain of natural or anthropogenic origin (soil-plant-feed-animal-food of animal origin/ water-feed-fish- food of animal origin in aquaculture) that merit further investigation in terms of their occurrence in feeds, their intake absorption and metabolism by animals, including carry over into animal tissues human foods, and their excretion by the animal. Includes evaluating modeling studies.
3. Improve knowledge about the relations between limits of contaminants in feed and corresponding levels in human food.
4. Evaluate existing analytical methods, develop and validate new analytical approaches (including screening and rapid methods) for tracing the presence of undesirable substances.
5. Identify situations where collaboration between participating laboratories could generate added value and promote their occurrence.
6. Contribute to the feed safety platform