THE EUROPEAN DECLARATION ON FOOD, TECHNOLOGY AND NUTRITION

Preamble
We participants of the First European Food Congress (Ljubljana 2008) endorse the FAO/WHO Declaration of Nutrition (Rome 1992) and the WHO Declaration on Food Safety (Beijing 2007). Through this declaration we would like to emphasize issues related to food, technology and nutrition of importance to Europe.

TARGET AUDIENCE
The European Declaration on FOOD, TECHNOLOGY and NUTRITION is targeted at the European Consumers, Policy Makers, Scientists, European Food Industry, and other Stakeholders.

FOOD AND NUTRITION
Food is necessary for human growth, development and the functions of the body. Good nutrition demands a well-balanced diet that provides an adequate daily amount of all nutrient classes and optimal intake of energy for the human body. Food must be safe, nutritious and provided in a sustainable way that maintains consumer’s dignity and cultural identity.

EUROPEAN FOOD SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND NUTRITION
European professionals of food science, technology and nutrition continuously contribute to important advances in food production, conservation, processing, food storage and distribution, as well as nutrition and human well-being by implementing basic sciences to these applying research fields. They have also organised themselves into many scientific and professional associations. These are normally based in single countries but also in clusters of regions with the same eating habits and may be either general or organised into single science and vocational-based disciplines such as biology, chemistry, biochemistry, biotechnology, microbiology, engineering, nutritional sciences, medical sciences and other related sciences.
It is the aim of this Declaration to provide a focus for all these disciplines and serve the general population of Europe as well as the community of scientists, politicians, regulators and industry in the most optimal way. This cohesion will enable Europe to compete successfully in the international market, to increase the availability of healthy food, and to lead the world in standards of scientific rigour and integrity.

COHESION OF EUROPEAN FOOD SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND NUTRITION
This declaration aims to initiate debate amongst European food scientists, food technologists and nutrition professionals to establish mechanisms through which, hopefully, future integration can be achieved. A second objective is to assist the harmonisation of the European food industry and food quality and safety standards. All of these initiatives can help to promote the expanding influence that the food science, technology and nutrition professions should have on technological, scientific, political, environmental, social and cultural thought in Europe. Of course, this must be done without harming nutrition and regional specificities of food and diets in Europe since it is this diversity, which will generate future discoveries and innovations.

TOP ISSUES
This declaration should specifically stimulate debate on the following issues:
- Food is a very important strategic and political issue;
- Contamination of food with microbiological, chemical and physical agents or food allergen remains a key public health concern;
- Local food production influences regional culture, preserves biological diversity, and contributes to regional social and economic stability;
- Long-distance transportation chains may reduce food quality and may have an adverse effect on the environment;
- Food has a key role in establishing and maintaining good dietary habits as part of a healthy lifestyle along the whole human life span;
- Increasing incidence of obesity and diet-related chronic non-infectious diseases are among major public health concerns and causes of social security expenditure;
- Education levels and current knowledge transfer in the field are not adequate for consumers to make informed choices;
- Training and education of stakeholders of the food chain constitute a huge challenge.

BASIC PRINCIPLES TO BE MAINTAINED AND PROMOTED
A nutritionally adequate supply of safe food is a basic human right of every consumer:
- Everyone has the right to reliable information on foods, diet and their health impacts;
- Food production, processing, transport and distribution must be carried out in a sustainable manner taking into consideration environmental, societal and ethical consequences but also regulatory issues like traceability;
- Technological achievements in developments of food that is suitable for targeted groups with special nutrition requirements should be welcomed;
- Honest and appropriate labelling of foods in cooperation with food industry and official legislation authorities has to be obeyed;
- Understandable and scientifically evidence-based media communication is recognized as an essential requirement;
- Adequate nutrition and healthy lifestyles that have a key roles in prevention and reduction of diseases should be promoted;
- Everyone has the right to get early education about food and nutrition to be able to take personal responsibility for own health and apt food choices;
- Managers of food industry must recognise the need for expertises in nutrition and food safety and ensure that resources necessary for food safety assurance are adequate.

KEY ACTIONS
This Declaration promotes the following Key Actions:
- Food producers, processors and retailers should consider, in addition to regulation, ethical measures in all processes in the food chain;
- Experts should work in accordance with professional and ethical guidelines;
- Governments and other responsible authorities and institutions should harmonise regulations between national food policies so as to adapt more readily and efficiently to future global changes;
- Governments and other responsible authorities and institutions should develop national food policies that take into account social and cultural differences, experiences and specific needs;
- All food science, nutrition and technology professionals should campaign for the establishment of educational systems that will result in better-informed consumers by effective knowledge transfer;
- Everyone should be able to take responsibility for own health and apt food choice;
- Signatories will do all that is in their power to ensure that the principles enshrined in this Declaration will be achieved.

Signed by
Professor Peter Raspor, President of the First European Food Congress on behalf of congress Ambassadors Committee from 41 European countries.

Ilirjana Boci represented by Haxhi Allmuca, Albania; Ashot Saghiyan, Armenia, Wolfgang Kniefel represented by Gerhard Schleining, Austria; Koen Dewettinck represented by Bart Heyman, Belgium; Faruk Čaklovica, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Iordanka Alexieva represented by Laska Rangelova, Bulgaria; Mate Bilić replaced by Martina Piasek, Croatia; Athina Panayiotou, Cyprus; Jana Hajšlová, Czech Republic, Henning Otte Hansen, Denmark; Toomas Paalme, Estonia; Anu Kaukovirta-Norja represented by Helena Pastell, Finland; Paul Colonna represented by Michel Franck, France; George Kalantzopoulos replaced by Ioannis Samelis, Greece; Giorgi Kvesitadze replaced by Tinatin Sadunishvili, Georgia; Sabine Kulling, Germany; András Salgó, Hungary; Inga Thorsdottir, Iceland; Francis Butler represented by Brian McKenna, Ireland; Rosangela Marchelli, Italy; Daina Karklina replaced by Aija Mengaile, Latvia; Rimantas Venskutonis, Lithuania; Torsten Bohn, Luxembourg; Vladimir Kakurinov, Macedonia; Anna McElhatton, Malta; Slavko Mirecki, Montenegro; Bernd van der Meulen, Nederland, Wenche Frølich, Norway; Włodzimierz Grajek, Poland; Xavier Malcata represented by Ana Oliveira Madsen, Portugal; Mona Popa, Romania; Iosif Rogov, Russia; Miomir Nikšić, Serbia; Peter Šimko represented by Norbert Bomba, Slovakia; Božidar Žlender, Slovenia; Manuel Vázquez, replaced by Ascension Marcos, Spain; Anne-Marie Hermansson represented by Lilia Ahrne, Sweden; Klaus Zimmermann replaced by Yasmine Motarjemi, Switzerland; Fatih Yildiz, Turkey; Sergey Fedosov, Ukraine; David White replaced by Keith Wladron, UK

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