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Development of a novel scoring system for identifying emerging chemical risks in the food chain

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Abstract

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is responsible for risk assessment of all aspects of food safety, including the establishment of procedures aimed at the identification of emerging risks to food safety. Here, a scoring system was developed for identifying chemicals registered under the European REACH Regulation that could be of potential concern in the food chain using the following parameters: (i) environmental release based on maximum aggregated tonnages and environmental release categories; (ii) biodegradation in the environment; (iii) bioaccumulation and in vivo and in vitro toxicity. The screening approach was tested on 100 data-rich chemicals registered under the REACH Regulation at aggregated volumes of at least 1000 tonnes per annum. The results show that substance-specific data generated under the REACH Regulation can be used to identify potential emerging risks in the food chain. After application of the screening procedure, priority chemicals can be identified as potentially emerging risk chemicals through the integration of exposure, environmental fate and toxicity. The default approach is to generate a single total score for each substance using a predefined weighting scenario. However, it is also possible to use a pivot table approach to combine the individual scores in different ways that reflect user-defined priorities, which enables a very flexible, iterative definition of screening criteria. Possible applications of the approaches are discussed using illustrative examples. Either approach can then be followed by in-depth evaluation of priority substances to ensure the identification of substances that present a real emerging chemical risk in the food chain.

Graphical abstract: Development of a novel scoring system for identifying emerging chemical risks in the food chain

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Publication details

The article was received on 26 Nov 2017, accepted on 17 Jan 2018 and first published on 18 Jan 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7EM00564D
Citation: Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts, 2018, Advance Article
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    Development of a novel scoring system for identifying emerging chemical risks in the food chain

    J. Oltmanns, O. Licht, A. Bitsch, M.-L. Bohlen, S. E. Escher, V. Silano, M. MacLeod, R. Serafimova, G. E. N. Kass and C. Merten, Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts, 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7EM00564D

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