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Food Quality and Safety in Europe


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The European Union is the world's largest importer and exporter of more and more diverse food products, trading with countries all over the world. With this extensive trade, food safety cannot be seen solely as an internal issue. Exactly the same can be said about zoonoses, mycotoxins, chemical contaminants and other hazards to food products in international trade and international research.

Scientific and technological cooperation between European and third countries' scientists bring added value to scientific, technical and economic progress within the EU. This cooperation is also of particular interest with regards to the reinforcement of the EU's political and socioeconomic position in the world.

The proposal FOOD-N-CO aims to improve the quantity and quality of International Cooperation Third Countries (INCO) in Food, Agriculture and Biotechnology-related research. Better quantity and quality will come from the development of a strong network of National Contact Points (NCPs) and Information Contact Points (ICPs) in Europe and INCO countries.


The NCPs /ICPs network is built via a series of training sessions, information days, national training sessions, a brokerage event and a final INCO conference. Essentially, the needs of each country emerge, thus facilitating the process to find the right partners in INCO countries for EU projects. Besides strengthening capacity and supporting a network between EU and INCO countries, FOODN- CO also effectively increases participation by bolstering ties between the two groups and promoting research communities of INCO countries.

FOOD-N-CO, comprised of 7 EU Member States and 13 INCO countries, secures the highest possible standard. The presence of well-trained and qualified staff at the Information Contact Points (ICPs) for the research communities guarantees this. FOOD-N-CO successfully builds a permanent network allowing an exchange of skills and experience between the partners. Participants focus on strengthening capacity, training at transnational level and swapping experiences.

It should be noted that new lifestyles and dietary patterns has brought on diet-related diseases, such as diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease and various forms of cancer, among others. These changes have been harmful also to developing and newly developed countries. Partnerships between European and other researchers bring added value to the scientific, technical and economic progress with the EU and worldwide. Ultimately, the FOOD-N-CO project will bear fruit if a multiparty effort is made. All Member States, Candidate Countries and Associated Countries can profit from their cooperation with Food ICPs from INCO countries.

List of Partners

  • SenterNovem/EG-Liaison (The Netherlands)
  • HSTF Hungarian Science and Technology Foundation (Hungary)
  • Austrian Research Promotion Agency (Austria)
  • The Brussels Enterprise Agency (Belgium)
  • Instytut Podstawowych Problemów Techniki Polskiej Akademii Nauk (Poland)
  • Agenzia per la Promozione della Ricerca Europea (Italy)
  • Technology Centre of the Academy of Sciences CR (Czech Republic)
  • Secretariat of Science, Technology and Innovative Production (Argentina)
  • CSIR Food, Biological and Chemical Technologies (South Africa)
  • Nawaharlal Nehru University, School of Life Sciences (India)
  • Ministry of Scientific Research, Technology and Development of Competency (Tunisia)
  • Ministère de l'éducation nationale, de l'enseignement supérieur, de la formation des cadres et de la recherche scientifique (Morocco)
  • Ministry of Science and Environmental Protection (Serbia)
  • National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research (Chile)
  • Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Brazil)
  • Egyptian National Scientific and Technical Information Network (Egypt)
  • Higher Council for Science and Technology (Jordan)
  • Ministarstvo znanosti, obrazovanja i sporta (Croatia)
  • Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Programa Universitario de Alimentos (Mexico)
  • China-EU S&T Cooperation Promotion Office (China)
Full title:
Cooperation network of national contact points with a special focus on third countries in the areas of food quality and safety and food, agriculture and biotechnology
Contract n°:
Project co-ordinator:
Koos de Korte,
EC Scientific Officer:
Jean-François Maljean,
EU contribution:
€ 900,000
Specific Support Action

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Last update: 06 December 2007 | Top