EWS annual report 2019 available now!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

With 427 EWS notifications, divided across 247 EWS cases, GMP+ International faced an increase of 19% in the number of EWS notifications compared to 2018 (358) and an increase of 21% in the number of EWS cases (204).

The number of warnings (3) sent to GMP+ participants were the lowest compared to the past five years. The relatively low number of warnings shows that GMP+ certified companies, in most cases, had the situation under control quickly, limiting the risk of contamination in the chain and preventing feed safety from being compromised.

Key fact and figures of 2019

The key facts and figures of the EWS notifications 2019 are shown in our EWS infographic and excel overview. In this overview you will find detailed information per EWS case, including the involved product type, contaminant, sources of contamination and countries of origin of the contaminated feed.

This year also the month of recipe of the case is shown, in this way the timeframe is more clear. By adding this data that we want to share on a frequent basis in the future, all participants can check if they received a batch with the same around that timeframe and to take actions if needed. The excel overview can be consulted after login in to the Portal.

Warnings published in 2019

In 2019 three warnings were published. Two warnings were connected to each other, both were batched of sugar beet pulp and sugar beet pellet from Germany contaminated with Zearalenone (ZEA). The cause of contamination was related to the regional infestation by insects (beet moth) on the beets causing fungal infestation and thus the formation of zearalenone. The other warning was related to Chlorpyrifos and Metalaxyl in sunflower acid oils from Eastern Europe.

Striking changes compared to 2018

The EWS infographic shows three striking changes in 2019 compared to 2018. These concern an increase  of more than 50 percent of notifications concerning mycotoxins and a decrease of more than 50 percent of notifications concerning dioxin/PCB and heavy metals.

The total notifications related to a contamination with mycotoxins increased from 16 to 40 in 2019 relating mostly to Zearalenone(ZEA) and Deoxynivalenol(DON). This growth can be clarified by the case in 2019 regarding ZEA in sugar beet pulp(9 notifications). The reason of contamination within this EWS case was the sugar beet pulp from the 2018 harvest contains elevated levels of ZEA. For this parameter no legal limits have been set for sugar beet pulp itself. However, the contamination in the raw material could lead to the EU guidance values for compound feed being exceeded in the processed product. 

A decrease of more than 50% is shown for the contaminant types dioxins/PCB (from 44 to 6 in 2019) and heavy metals (from 30 to 14 in 2019). The decreases is due to the fact that in 2018 there were big cases related to these contaminants types. 

The importance of a good risk management system!

The relatively low number of EWS warnings shows that GMP+ certified companies, in most cases, had the situation under control quickly, limiting the risk of contamination in the chain, and preventing feed safety from being compromised. This shows that a good risk management system is implemented within the companies. But of course the challenge for 2020 is to find the source of contamination in all cases.

Even though there were just three EWS warnings in 2019, it is important for all participants to report irregularities. It allows for fast action and, where necessary, for other parties involved to be notified about possible threats or risks (damage control). For that reason, the Early Warning System is an important element of a Feed Safety Management system such as GMP+ FSA.

Used terminology:
Notification: Unsafe feed being reported to GMP+ International.
 The whole of notifications about the same unsafe situation. It concerns notifications of different companies. Several notifications may relate to one case.
 GMP+ participants are warned to be alert to possible contamination in the purchase of a certain product from a certain country or region. The situation is urgent and not (fully) under control.