European and Japanese food safety regulators have reached an agreement to cooperate on the collection and sharing of food safety data.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and Japanese counterpart the Food Safety Commission (FSC) have agreed to share data on current and emerging food safety risks.

The groups have also engaged in discussions on a number of related topics, including animal cloning and nanotechnology.

A spokesperson for the European agency said that the agreement furthers the EFSA's aim of increasing international cooperation on food safety matters.

"The global dimension of food production means that, in order to improve food safety practices, it is desirable to cooperate internationally on matters of food safety," the spokesperson said.

The memorandum signed with Japan is the second formal international cooperation agreement EFSA has signed with a food safety authority outside the EU. In 2007, it reached an agreement with the US Food and Drug Administration designed to facilitate sharing of confidential, scientific information.