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European Union Reference Laboratories


What for - Financial aid to EU-RLs - CRLs recently designated - Work Programmes - List of EU-RLs in the field of animal health and live animals - European Union Reference Laboratories' evaluation

What for?

In the context of the EU strategy aimed at improving animal health and establishing the single market for live animals and animal products, a network of European Union and National reference laboratories dealing with major animal diseases has been gradually set up.

The Council and the Commission have designated European Union reference laboratories (EU-RLs) with scientific and technical expertise within the areas of animal health, public health and zootechnics in a number of legal acts. These legal acts contain provisions that specify the functions and duties of each designated European Union Reference Laboratory. The designation of European Union reference Laboratories should contribute to a high quality and uniformity of analytical results.

Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 April 2004 on official controls performed to ensure the verification of compliance with feed and food law, animal health and animal welfare rules, which applies from 1 January 2006, lays down the general tasks, duties and requirements for EU-RLs for food and feed and for animal health. EU-RL's for animal health and zootechnics are listed in Annex VIII to the above mentioned Regulation. That list contains all EU-RLs for animal health and zootechnics designated in other acts.

Functions and duties of the EU-RLs consist notably of providing information on analysis methods and organising comparative tests with the national reference laboratories, coordinating the application of the methods and research into new analysis methods, organising training and advanced courses for national reference laboratory staff and providing scientific and technical assistance to the Commission.

Apart from these duties and functions the Commission approves an annual working plan for each EU-RL specifying their tasks for the next year.


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Financial aid to EU-RLs

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EU-RLs recently designated

In 2011 the following EU-RLs were designated by the Commission:

In 2008 the following EU-RLs were designated by the Commission:


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Work Programmes

For information on the work programmes of the European Union Reference Laboratories in the Field of Animal Health and Live Animals for 2008, 2009 and 2010 please see the attached Working Programmes:


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List of EU-RLs in the field of animal health and live animals

Please find below the list of the different European Union Reference Laboratories in the field of animal health and live animals

NAME OF LABORATORY PER DISEASE
ADDRESS AND CONTACT DETAILS
EU-RL for Avian Influenza
EU-RL for Newcastle Disease
EU-RL for Bluetongue
  • Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright Laboratory,
  • Pirbright, Woking,
  • Surrey GU24 ONF
  • United Kingdom
EU-RL for African Horses sickness
  • Laboratorio de sanidad y producción animal,
  • Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, Medio Rural y Medio Marino
  • 28110 Algete, Madrid – España
EU-RL for Foot and Mouth Disease
  • Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright Laboratory,
  • Pirbright, Woking,
  • Surrey GU24 ONF
  • United Kingdom
EU-RL for Swine Vesicular Disease
  • Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright Laboratory,
  • Pirbright, Woking,
  • Surrey GU24 ONF
  • United Kingdom
EU-RL for African Swine Fever
  • Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Animal,
  • Ctra. De Algete a El Casar, Valdeolmos
  • 28130, Madrid, Spain
  • Director: Marisa Arias
EU-RL for Classical Swine Fever
  • Institut für Virologie
  • der Tierarztlichen Hochschule Hanover,
  • Bünteweg 17,
  • D-30559 Hannover, Germany
EU-RL for Rabies (serology)
  • AFSSA, Nancy
  • Laboratoire d’études sur la rage et la pathologie des animaux sauvages
  • Domaine de Pixérécourt, BP 9
  • F-54220 Malzéville, France
EU-RL for Bivalve molluscs diseases
  • The Ifremer Laboratory
  • B.P. 133
  • F-17390 La tremblade, France
  • Director: Isabelle Arzul (Coordinator)
  • www.ifremer.fr/crlmollusc
EU-RL for Zootechnics (bovine breeding)
  • INTERBULL Centre
  • Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences , P.O. Box: 7023
  • S-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden
  • Director: Joao Walter Dürr
  • http://www.interbull.org/
EU-RL for Brucellosis
  • AFSSA Alfort
  • Unité zoonoses bactériennes
  • 23 avenue du Général de Gaulle
  • 94 706 Maisons Alfort CEDEX
  • France
EU-RL for Fish diseases
  • National Veterinary Institute
  • Technical University of Denmark
  • Hangøvej 2
  • DK-8200 Århus N, Denmark
  • Director: Niels Jørgen Olesen
EU-RL for Bovine Tuberculosis
  • VISAVET - Laboratorio de vigilancia veterinaria, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
  • Avda. Puerta de Hierro, s/n. Ciudad Universitaria
  • 28040. Madrid
EU-RL for Crustacen Diseases
  • Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science (Cefas)
  • Weymouth Laboratory, The Nothe, Barrack Road
  • Weymouth
  • Dorset DT4 8UB
  • United Kingdom
EU-RL equine diseases other than AHS
  • Agence Française de Sécurité Sanitaire des aliments (AFSSA)-Laboratoire d'études et de recherches en pathologie animale et zoonoses
  • 23, avenue du Général de Gaulle
  • F-94706 MAISONS-ALFORT Cedex
EU-RL rabies
  • AFSSA, Nancy
  • Laboratoire d’études sur la rage et la pathologie des animaux sauvages
  • Domaine de Pixérécourt, BP 9
  • F-54220 Malzéville, France
  • http://www.ansespro.fr/eurl-rabies/

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European Union Reference Laboratories' evaluation

In accordance with the Communication from the Commission on a new Animal Health Strategy for the EU and in the Action Plan of the new Animal Health Strategy, DG SANCO carried out an external evaluation of the EU-RLs in the field of animal health and live animals for 2009.

The main purpose of the evaluation was to assess the performance of the EU-RLs during the past 15 years, especially as regards effectiveness and efficiency and to identify areas for improvement to ensure high quality and harmonisation of laboratory testing of animal diseases across the European Union, taking into account the current animal health situation in the EU.

The scope of the evaluation will concern the following EU-RLs in the field of animal health and live animals: EU-RLs for avian influenza, Newcastle disease, bluetongue, classical swine fever, African swine fever, swine vesicular disease, African horse sickness, rabies serology, fish diseases, molluscs' diseases, zootechnics and for transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. EU-RLs for foot-and-mouth disease, Brucellosis, equine diseases other than African horse sickness, crustacean diseases, rabies and bovine tuberculosis are not included in the evaluation as they have been appointed only very recently.

The evaluation was performed by an external contractor (VetEffect-Agraceas consortium) selected through an Open Call for Tender. The final report of the evaluation can be found here pdf.

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