Risk ranking of chemical hazards in food - A case study on antibiotics in the Netherlands

E.D. van Asselt, M. van der Spiegel, M.Y. Noordam, M.G. Pikkemaat, H.J. van der Fels-Klerx

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    20 Citations (Scopus)


    Part of risk based control is the prioritization of hazard-food combinations for monitoring food safety. The aim of the current study was to develop a method for risk ranking of chemical food safety hazards using a structured and transparent approach. The method established is semi-quantitative and uses scores on both severity and probability of the hazard. The method was applied in a case study on antibiotic residue monitoring in a variety of products in the Netherlands. Severity of the hazard was scored using the Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) as well as a score on the severity of antimicrobial resistance. Probability of the hazard depended on the amount of product consumed and on the amount of antibiotics used in animals as well as evidence of residues found. Data were gathered using literature research and expert opinions. The method showed that antibiotics most relevant for monitoring were product specific. Overall, nitrofurans were amongst the most important antibiotics to be included in monitoring programs for the products studied: pork, beef, poultry, honey and shrimps. This was mainly due to the detection of residues in products imported from outside the EU. Oxytetracycline was another major important antibiotic for the products studied (both nationally produced and imported). The study showed that the method derived is capable of ranking antibiotic-food combinations and has potential for the application in other chemical hazard-food combinations
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1636-1642
    JournalFood Research International
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


    • surveillance
    • exposure
    • program


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