The management of the food alert network is carried out on a national level through the Coordinated System of Fast Interchange of Information (SCIRI).
Inside this system, the Spanish Agency for Food Safety and Nutrition (AESAN) centralize and coordinate the SCIRI, and is the Spanish contact point of the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) and other international alert systems like the INFOSAN.
The Coordinated System of Fast Interchange of Information (SCIRI) is a network, that allows keeping constant surveillance of risk or incident, related to foods that may affect human health.
In 1987 were laid down the basis for their development and operation, consolidating from its beginnings to the present as a highly effective system to carry out the surveillance as well as the management of all those incidents that may occur in food available to the final consumer.
During this time, some aspects have been identified for their importance and have been and still continue to be object of constant improvement, thereby enabling the fast location of involved products and the adoption of the adequate measures for their immediate withdrawal from the market, discarding products because of their similarity with those affected could be involved, causing important damages to the operators involved.
The main objective of this system is to guarantee to consumers that the products that are in the market are safe and don’t present any risks for their health.
In order to reach this objective, the main characteristic is the fast
interchange of information
among the different competent Authorities, thereby facilitating the required activities to the competent Authorities on those products that could have direct repercussion on human health.
These actions allow the detection of other risks that, although a priori don’t have a serious and immediate repercussion in the health of consumers, need the adoption of measures on behalf of the competent Authorities oriented to protect the health of consumers and that can be the base for the organization of the Official Controls.
The legal basis for the SCIRI is Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 January 2002 laying down the general principles and requirements of food law, establishing the European Food Safety Authority and laying down procedures in matters of food safety.
The SCIRI involves the AESAN, as the coordinator at national level, the competent Authorities on food safety of the Autonomous Communities and the Autonomic Cities of Ceuta and Melilla, the Ministry of Defence (through the General inspectorate of Health of the Defence), the European Commission (through Main directorate SANCO) and the General Subdivision of Exterior Health, Main directorate of Public Health and Exterior Health, of the Ministry of Health, Social Affairs and Equal for the notifications of risks related to the product imported from other countries. In addition, another group of institutions and organizations participate through specific agreements of collaboration within the framework of the SCIRI.
Important Note: There is no direction in AESAN for the enquiry about the food alerts situation because these data have a confidential character and, for that reason, they do not appear in the website available to the general public, but only as restricted access to the contact points of the Coordinated System of Fast Interchange of Information.
However, for any further information about this subject, people must contact with the Main Directorate of Public Health and/or Consumption of its Autonomous Community, because at national level these Main directorates are the contact points of the Coordinated System of Fast Interchange of Information responsible to carry out the management of food alerts.