|SSC: A short history of six busy years (90KB)|
|Scientific Steering Committee holds characteristically busy final meetings|
The European Food Safety Authority ( EFSA) is now responsible for providing the Commission with scientific advice on food safety. Until May 2003, the advice was provided by six different Scientific Committees: Food, Veterinary, Animal Nutrition, Cosmetology, Pesticides and Toxicity and Ecotoxicology. In addition, and in accordance with the above Communication, the European Commission decided on 10 June 1997 to create a Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) in the field of consumer health and food safety. The detailed mandate of this Committee is available on this site.
High quality scientific advice for the drafting and amendment of Community rules regarding consumer protection in general and consumer health in particular is of utmost importance. This was also underlined in the April 1997 Commission Communication on consumer health and food safety. "Consumer health” is here defined as including matters on consumer health in its strictest sense, animal health and welfare, plant health and environmental health.
Many issues relating to consumer health are of a multidisciplinary nature and require input from various scientific disciplines.
The scientific advice from these seven Committees was made available following a request by the Commission for scientific advice or an opinion on a new development that might cause concern for consumer health. The advice and opinions, in the interest of consumers and industry, are based on the principles of excellence, independence and transparency.
The multi-disciplinary aspects of the Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) epidemic were addressed by a Multidisciplinary Scientific Committee (MDSC), established in 1996. The Decision of 10 June 1997 ended the existence of the MDSC and after that, scientific advice on multidisciplinary aspects of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (including bovine spongiform encephalopathy) was delivered by the SSC with the support of a specific ad-hoc group.