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Climate change and associated extreme weather events and its impact on food security and/or water availability for agricultural use and processing may affect global sourcing and logistics and subsequently pose new food safety challenges. Climate change may impact on microbial evolution and stress response, pathogen emergence and lead to shifts of crop production areas and ecosystems resulting in potential new transmission routes and (re-)emerging issues due to greater exposure to particular microbial and chemical hazards.
The food safety challenges raised by climate related changes highlight the need for timely scientific advice to guide risk management decisions. In Veg-i-Trade climate change is exemplified by different EU regions corresponding with different climatic conditions: Northern Europe (Norway), middle Europe (Belgium) and Southern Europe (Spain and Balkan region represented by Serbia). These different climatic conditions make that the fresh produce production processes between these countries differ on several points. On a world-wide scale, various production systems due to variable climatic conditions are exemplified by collaborating ICPC countries from South-America (Brazil), Africa (Egypt and South-Africa) and South-East Asia (India), major fresh produce producing and EU trading partners. Veg-i-Trade will provide the first comprehensive integrated impact assessments of farm to fork systems and food safety for different scenarios of climate change.