The identification of emerging food risks in in the global food chain is essential if consumer health protection is to be optimised, and economic problems associated with tee occurrence of a food safety incident averted. Experts in emerging risk identification (N= 49, drawn from 31 countries) from all parts of the world were asked what they thought were the most important changes that would influence global food chains in the near future. The most frequently mentioned change was climate change. Increasing globalization and socio-economical changes in the world were also mentioned frequently. The expert community thought that climate change would have a negative influence on food chains and would result in higher food price levels, environmental degradation, problems with food security in developing countries and possibly a severe global economical crisis. All these factors might be contributing to social inequality across the world, leading to increased political unrest. The experts did not report the specific influences they expected of these changes on food safety. In general, they regarded the increasing science based risk assessment and a range of fast communication structure, including that which is hosted by institutions. (for example, rapid alert systems and technically such as the increased worldwide easy internet/e-mail access) as an improvement which has potential to facilitate fast intervention in an emerging crisis. However, only a few experts reported the need to include genuine forecasting methods such as microbiological modelling. The majority of experts could not provide a forecast of the exact effects of climate change on the international food chain. In the second, forthcoming, stage of the research these results will be quantified, and feedback provided to participants regarding the areas where consensus and disagreement has emerged in the first round. Furthermore, how experts predict the relative importance of each of these elements for the future of food production worldwide will be investigated, together with implications fro a future research agenda. and how best to proceed with international harmonisation of governance practices.
|Publication status||Published - 2008|
|Event||An International Conference on Food Security and Environmental Change. Linking Science, Development and Policy for Adaptation - |
Duration: 2 Apr 2008 → 4 Apr 2008
|Conference||An International Conference on Food Security and Environmental Change. Linking Science, Development and Policy for Adaptation|
|Period||2/04/08 → 4/04/08|