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Keyword 6 - International trade and globalisation

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The European Union is a major world player in import and export of food and beverages. ‘Vegetables and fruits’ comprise together with ‘fish and crustaceans’ the largest two product groups for EU-27 imports of food.
The harvested production of the main types of fruit and vegetable in the EU-27 remained stable during the last decade but there was growth in the imported volume of fruit and vegetables. Intra-community trade (within EU between Member States) as well as (global) international trade in fresh produce is an important economic activity of many member states of the EU.
International trade and globalization impose challenges on the assurance of food safety in particular to address the variability of the production systems and their governance. Also the consumer is involved as increased travelling and migration has also increased diversity in our consumption patterns. Trends towards out-of-house cooking, use of multicultural food and exotic ingredients, new cooking techniques in our world@home society may also have an impact on the exposure to food borne hazards.

Veg-i-Trade approach

Mapping the economical structure, stakeholders’ relationships and the organisation of the fresh produce supply chain at European and global level and identification of new trends in European consumption patterns will enable to support the selection of the relevant case studies to focus on in Veg-i-Trade. This information will be further applied in the risk assessment studies for scenario analysis of the fresh supply chain and in the prioritization of risks.