FINLAND/EU: Helsinki best bet for new European Food Authority
"Helsinki is the best place for the job." This is how Pertti Salolainen, Finnish ambassador to the UK, summed up his stance on the race currently under way to host the new European Food Authority. Finland is fast emerging as the main contender, although Spain and Italy have proposed Barcelona and Parma respectively.The exact responsibilities of the new agency have yet to be finalised. It will certainly focus on regaining and maintaining consumer confidence in food safety, which is low in a number of Member States following outbreaks such as BSE and dioxin in recent years. Another priority will be risk assessment, and the Authority will make recommendations to national authorities to help them avert food safety crises - and deal with them if they occur. Responsibility for enforcement and legislation will remain with the Commission.
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