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Assistance and cooperation with scientific examination

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Assistance and cooperation with scientific examination


Improve cooperation between the scientific bodies of the Member States and the Commission with a view to lending the Commission the assistance it needs in scientific questions relating to food, notably in the field of public health.

2) ACT

Council Directive 93/5/EEC of 25 February 1993 on assistance and cooperation to the Commission by the Member States in the scientific examination of questions relating to food [Official Journal L 52 of 04.03.1993].

Amended by:

Regulation (EC) No 1882/2003 [Official Journal L 284 of 31.10.2003].


The cooperation provided for in this Directive applies when a Council act requires the opinion of the Scientific Committee on Food and, under certain circumstances, when other problems relating to the protection of the health and safety of persons arise from the consumption of food.

Member States are required to take the necessary measures, including financial measures, to enable their competent authorities and bodies to cooperate with the Commission and lend it the scientific assistance it needs in such fields as medicine, toxicology, biology, microbiology, biotechnology, novel foods and processes, methods of analysis, risk assessment techniques, physics and chemistry.

Member States are required to designate the authorities or bodies which will be responsible for cooperation with the Commission. This authority must send to the Commission a list of the institutes participating in the cooperation procedure in its jurisdiction, to which it will distribute the assessment and scientific research tasks to be performed. The Commission may also have recourse to third-country institutes.

The measures needed to implement and foster cooperation (rules for the administrative management of the cooperation, inventory of tasks and priorities, presentation and appraisal of dossiers, etc.) are adopted by the Commission with the aid of the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health.


Dateof entry into force

Final date for implementation in the Member States

Directive 93/5/EEC



Regulation (EC) No 1882/2003



4) implementing measures

Administrative management

Commission Decision 94/458/EC of 29 June 1994 on the administrative management of cooperation in the scientific examination of questions relating to food [Official journal L 189 of 23.07.1994]. This decision lays down the rules governing the administrative management of cooperation between the Member States and the Commission in the scientific examination of questions relating to food.

Tasks covered by cooperation

Commission Decision 94/652/EC of 20 September 1994 establishing the inventory and distribution of tasks to be undertaken within the framework of cooperation by Member States in the scientific examination of questions relating to food [Official Journal L 253 of 29.09.1994] This decision is amended by the following Decisions: Decision 2000/669/EC - Official Journal L 279 of 01.11.2000Decision 2001/773/EC - Official Journal L 290 of 07.11.2001Decision 2002/916/EC - Official Journal L 279 of 23.11.2002

These decisions update the distribution of tasks set out in the Annex to Decision 94/652/EC, having regard to :

  • the scientific expertise and resources available within scientific institutes of the Member States taking part in the scientific cooperation;
  • the need for the protection of public health within the Community;
  • the requirements of Community foodstuffs legislation.

Accordingly, they identify the tasks for which cooperation is needed (for example, preparing reports, collecting data, keeping an archive, etc.), specify the Member States involved in the cooperation, designate one or more Member States as coordinators of the tasks identified and lay down the time limits for completing these tasks.

List of national competent authorities

Official Journal C 246 of 02.09.1994

Official Journal C 104 of 25.04.1995

Official Journal C 232 of 10.08.1996

Official Journal C 356 of 22.11.1997

Official Journal C 170 of 17.06.1999

These lists indicate the national authorities designated by the Member States to be responsible, with the Commission, for cooperation in the scientific examination of questions relating to food.

5) follow-up work

Last updated: 25.01.2005