The way exposure to residues of veterinary medicines, feed additives and pesticides in food of animal origin is currently assessed greatly varies depending on the specific piece of legislation and authority involved. To better harmonise methodologies and practices, a joint report has been published by EMA and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), answering the mandate received in 2020 by the EU Commission.

Legally binding maximum residue limits (MRLs) of veterinary medicines, feed additives and pesticides are established in the EU according to the different sectorial legislations, on the basis of evaluations carried out by EFSA and EMA, or other relevant authorities. Many different approaches and methodologies are currently used, which may lead to different outcomes.

The joint working group established by EMA and EFSA developed a set of recommendations for each element of the exposure assessment, which were subject to a public consultation in 2022.  Comments have been considered in drafting of the final version, which was adopted by EMA’s Committee for Veterinary Medicinal Products (CVMP), endorsed by EFSA’s Scientific Committee, and forwarded to the European Commission in December 2022. Would it adopt the recommendations, their implementation in the different sectors will require a number of follow-up actions over the coming years.