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News

Visit to the study kitchen from China

Exchanging experiences on Total Diet Studies in Germany and China: This was the objective of the delegation from the China National Center for Food Safety Risk Assessment (CFSA) and the German MEAL Study team at the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR).

BfR MEAL News: The BfR MEAL Study newsletter provides up-to-date and concise information

What foods are currently being examined for desirable and undesirable substances by the BfR MEAL Study? How many individual results are already available? At which event will current progress be discussed? The twice yearly BfR MEAL News of the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) is packed with information about Germany's first Total Diet Study.

First field phase completed: 135,000 analytical results show what`s in your food

Germany’s first Total Diet Study has completed the first of two field phases. In the past two and a half years, the BfR MEAL Study team has purchased almost 30,000 food items and then prepared more than 9,000 recipes in the specially fitted study kitchen, the same way they are normally dished up in Germany.

The BfR MEAL Study in Numbers

How many foods are being processed into meals in the study kitchen? What foods are being taken into consideration and what substances are they being tested for? The latest issue of BfR2GO presents the BfR MEAL Study in numbers illustrated with compact infographics.

Federal minister Julia Klöckner visits the BfR MEAL Study Kitchen

What's in our food? This was one of the questions that federal minister Julia Klöckner followed up on in the BfR MEAL study kitchen during her visit to the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) on 4 June 2019.

Fifth International Advisory Board Meeting for the BfR MEAL Study

What progress can the BfR MEAL study team report from the first two years of the field phase? What are the next steps of the second field phase of the first German total diet study to look like? The International Advisory Board of the BfR MEAL Study met at the BfR location in Alt-Marienfelde on 13 and 14 April 2019 to discuss these questions.

BfR MEAL study celebrating its 2nd birthday

With the formal opening of the study kitchen two years ago, the starting gun was fired for the experimental phase of the BfR MEAL study. Ever since, the BfR MEAL team has already covered more than 80,000 kilometres in four different regions of Germany to purchase food from various shopping outlets, taking into account seasonal and regional peculiarities.

Fourth International Advisory Board Meeting for the BfR MEAL Study

On October 19th and 20th, 2017 the International Advisory Board for the BfR MEAL Study met for the fourth time at the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment site at Alt-Marienfelde in Berlin. Together with scientists and researchers from international organisations such as the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), BfR’s French sister agency, ANSES, and experts from within Germany, the BfR-MEAL Study team discussed experiences from the first year of the study. The upcoming challenges with regard to the sampling and analysis of foods have also been an issue, as well as how to communicate the initial set of study results expected at the beginning of 2019.

It’s the BfR MEAL Study's birthday: 1 year of buying, preparing and analysing food

October 20th 2017, marks the first anniversary of the opening of the BfR MEAL kitchen. Since then food has been bought in four different regions in Germany, then prepared in the BfR MEAL kitchen in Berlin and subsequently examined in external laboratories for more than 300 different substances. Around 1,000 samples have already been analysed within the past year.

“To the pots, set, GO!” - Opening of the BfR MEAL Study Kitchen

On October 20, 2016, the BfR MEAL study kitchen was opened jointly by Dr. Maria Flachsbarth, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL), Thomas Mahlberg, Member of the German Bundestag, and Professor Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel, President of the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR). As part of the opening event at the BfR site in Alt-Marienfelde, the German radioeins presenter Marco Seiffert accompanied the guests through the programme explaining the concept of the study. 

Cooperation with the BfS

Because of its complexity, the BfR MEAL Study offers numerous connecting points for further satellite studies by external partners. For example, there is a cooperation with the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS) where samples prepared in the BfR MEAL kitchen are analysed for radiation from radioactive elements such as uranium.

Regional purchases

The BfR MEAL Study intends to find out which substances and in what concentrations consumers living in Germany eat on a daily basis in their food. For this reason, the food prepared in the BfR MEAL kitchen is purchased all over Germany. To this end, two teams of buyers drive to four regions in Germany, each with three sample points in a metropolitan, provincial and rural area.