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General Food Law - Precautionary Principle

Regulation EC/178/2002 pdf es da de el fr it nl pt fi sv (Article 7) formally establishes the Precautionary Principle as an option open to risk managers when decisions have to be made to protect health but scientific information concerning the risk is inconclusive or incomplete in some way.

The precautionary principle is relevant in those circumstances where risk managers have identified that there are reasonable grounds for concern that an unacceptable level of risk to health exists but the supporting information and data may not be sufficiently complete to enable a comprehensive risk assessment to be made. When faced with these specific circumstances, decision makers or risk mangers, may take measures or other actions to protect health based on the precautionary principle while seeking more complete scientific and other data. Such measures have to comply with the normal principles of non-discrimination and proportionality and should be considered as provisional until such time that more comprehensive information concerning the risk can be gathered and analysed.

Commission Communication on Precautionary Principle