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Proposal for establishment of a new technical committee

The national standards body of France (AFNOR) submits a proposal for the creation of a new Technical Committee “Animal Health”.

Scope:

Standardization in the field of animal health.

Including:

• Guidelines for implementation of diagnostic methods and quality control of diagnostic reagents;

• Data management and analytical technologies used for diagnostic methods.

Excluding:

• Terminology and methods for specific disease diagnosis already covered by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and European Union Reference Laboratories (EURLs);

• Standards on primary production in microbiology of the food chain as dealt with in CEN/TC 463;

• Animal welfare and zootechnics.

Rationale

International trade of animals, climate change and the alteration of ecosystems are the main factors favouring the emergence or re-emergence of animal diseases, including zoonoses that can be transmitted from animal, both domestic and wild, to human beings. More recently, the Covid-19 pandemic is thought to originate in the transmission of a bats’ disease to humans. In addition, animal health can also have economic impacts, for example by reducing the productivity of livestock farming or by hindering animal trade, both nationally and internationally.

European standardization in the field of animal health will provide clear, accessible and recognized documents for all steps of the animal disease control chain, complementing the manuals of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). The TC ‘Animal Health’ will ensure that it does not interfere with OIE work but rather possibly contributes to it. Its work will be based on existing OIE work to produce recommendations on the implementation of existing methods but would also address complementary issues such as reagent quality control and digitalization of animal health data exchange at European level.

To sum up, the creation of a European technical committee dedicated to animal health aims at:

• promoting good animal health diagnostic practices at European level,

• harmonizing practices,

• ensuring common international requirements or guidelines to increase European competitiveness in international trade,

• supporting stakeholders, e.g. livestock and diagnostics industry,

• enhancing the expertise in this field in the countries of CEN members,

• and, eventually, enhancing protection of consumers.

Main categories of stakeholders affected:

• European Union Reference Laboratories;

• National reference laboratories;

• Livestock and diagnostics industry;

• International organizations: World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and others;

• Consumers;

• Governments, in particular Ministry of Agriculture.

The national stakeholders can provide their position on the proposal by 28.02.2021 to expert Mariya Hristova email: maria.hristova@bds-bg.org, tel: +359 2 81 74 588.

For more information about the proposal see: