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Funding of Official Controls

Strict and regular official controls, enforcing existing rules and carried out by the EU Member States' authorities, ensure that the EU's high standards for food and feed are maintained.

The specific objective of the Regulation (EU) No 652/2014, related to official controls, is to improve the effectiveness, efficiency and reliability of official controls, as a vital tool for maintaining a high level of safety for humans, animals and plants along the food chain whilst ensuring a high level of protection of the environment.

EU Reference Laboratories

EU Reference Laboratories (EURLs) aim to ensure high-quality, uniform testing in the EU and support Commission activities on risk management and risk assessment in the area of laboratory analysis, according to the provisions of the Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 on official controls performed to ensure the verification of compliance with feed and food law, animal health and animal welfare rules.

Role of EURLs:

  • Provide National Reference Laboratories (NRLs) with analytical methods and diagnostic technics, and coordinate their application;
  • Train NRL staff and experts from developing countries;
  • Assist the Commission scientifically and technically e.g. when EU countries contest results of analysis;
  • Collaborate with the competent laboratories in non-EU countries;
  • Assist actively in the diagnosis of animal disease outbreaks in EU countries.

1. EU Reference laboratories

2. Funding of EURLs programmes

EU-RLs receive annual EU funding to fulfil their tasks and functions and cover their operational costs (Decision 2009/470/EC).

Every year the Commission approves their work programmes. Laboratories receive funding if they have completed their work programmes and supply the necessary information on time.

Regulation (EU) No 926/2011, amended by Regulation (EU) No 135/2013 - funding rules until 31 December 2014

In 2015, the funding rules are defined by the Regulation (EU) No 652/2014 for food chain, animal and plant health expenditures. The main objective of the Regulation related to official controls is to improve the effectiveness, efficiency and reliability of official controls, as a vital tool for maintaining a high level of safety for humans, animals and plants along the food chain whilst ensuring a high level of protection of the environment

3. Useful information

4. Previous years

Training

The EU may finance the training of the staff of the competent authorities responsible for official controls in order to develop a harmonised approach to official controls, ensuring a high level of protection of human, animal and plant health.

Better Training for Safer Food is a Commission training initiative covering food and feed law, animal health and welfare and plant health rules. It trains Member State and candidate country national authority staff involved in official controls in these areas.