Carrying out analyzes of milk quality and testing the safety of animal feed are the basic tasks of researchers in the Directorate for National Reference Laboratories in Batajnica. Bearing in mind that this is a roof laboratory in the process of food safety testing – the analysis done in this laboratory is final, and after that there is no doubt that the substance is correct.
Director Directorate for National Reference Laboratories in Batajnica, Dr. Nenad Dolovac, pointed out that the Directorate also examines pesticide residues, which is very important, because they are currently perhaps the biggest risk factor for human health.
There is a laboratory in Batajnica several branches – it examines the quality of milk, food safety, food safety; in the phytosanitary laboratory, tests are performed in the field of plant health – such as the presence of pesticide residues in food of plant origin and animal feed; and within the Directorate there is also the Plant Gene Bank.
Cooperation between the Directorate and the European Union
As the director of Dolovac explains, the Directorate is accredited for checking the highest food safety: “Testing of heavy metals, microtoxins, food contaminants, based on European Union regulations and our domestic regulations.”
Domestic food safety regulations are fully in line with EU regulations, he adds.
“Every year, we harmonize with the latest EU norms, it is a living process, when it comes to the level of residues in food. All the knowledge he comes to EFSA (European Food Safety Authority), and other European Union bodies, we comply with them, sometimes twice a year. “
“It is our obligation and intention, and our responsibility is seen in that. Everything that is registered for application in the EU, is also registered in our country, and there is no doubt about that, because most of our products go to the European Union, and it is our obligation that we must be harmonized with that market. Without such harmonization, our economy, exporters, and our citizens would be at risk. All criteria, testing methods, everything else related to laboratories and food safety are absolutely in line with EU standards. “
Speaking further about the cooperation between this institution and the European Union, the director reminds that in the construction and equipping of the reference laboratory in Batajnica, The European Union has invested 7.5m euros, while Serbia has invested 3m euros.
“Donations have really been numerous in the last ten years, about 10 million euros has been invested – both in the adaptation of rooms, laboratory spaces, and in equipment. With the help of that equipment, the accreditation of this laboratory was performed, and with the help of that equipment, it works “, says Dolovac.
EU contribution during the pandemic
Among equipment donated by the EU there is also robotic system for sample handling, which significantly simplifies the testing process and makes it safer, and which was also used when testing samples for kovid.
“I would especially like to express my gratitude on my own behalf and on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Government of the Republic of Serbia – at the beginning of the kovida pandemic 19, EU-donated food safety equipment was used to test for coronavirus. We managed to do close to 450,000 PCR analyzes in about a year and two. Now the Directorate is returning to normal activities.
The European Union has donated 230m euros to agriculture and food security in Serbia since 2000. Raising competitiveness, food safety and public health standards, respect for animal welfare and environmental standards are the main areas of EU assistance to this sector. IPARD (Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance for Rural Development) is the leading program in this area, within which 175 million euros were allocated for Serbia in the period between 2014 and 2020, with another 55 million euros of national co-financing, and it is intended for agricultural producers.
Source: Agromedia by www.agromedia.rs.
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