November 20, 2008
On Monday, the EU and China renewed and extended the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in order to have a closer cooperation on food safety.
The newly signed agreement encompasses an updated framework that involves product and food safety and sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) issues. Food safety cooperation will be enhanced by providing China with immediate access to the EU's Rapid Alert System for Feed and Food (RASFF), allowing notifications concerning products of Chinese origin to be acted on by both EU and Chinese authorities.
An EU official indicated that granting access to the RASFF alerts â€“ which are sent out when member state authorities detect unsafe food products on their markets â€“ will allow China to provide product distribution lists and track potentially hazardous products more rapidly.