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The Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed – a Critical Approach

Take honour from me, and my life is done.King Richard II, W. Shakespeare

Vicente Rodríguez Fuentes

The Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) is an instrument to communicate food (and feed) risks. It is designed to allow authorities to be rapidly informed of these risks and to take any necessary action. The system is international and is difficult to classify under traditional administrative law. Companies affected by it have very little room for defence. The instantaneous and, at the same time, international character of the RASFF poses some serious legal challenges, such as which jurisdiction is competent, who has the legal standing to dispute an alert, who is responsible for its consequences and how to establish a causal link between the intervention of one authority and the consequences of the alert, when these consequences are unjustified and compensation is sought.

Vicente Rodriguez Fuentes, Abogado, Legal Agrifood Abogados, Seville, Spain.


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