Total Diet Studies - 6th International Workshop in Berlin

The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) and the World Health Organization (WHO) hosted the "6th International Workshop on Total Diet Studies (TDS)" on 10 and 11 October 2022. At the conference, countries from all over the world presented results and latest developments in the field of TDS. The event was preceded by a four-day online tutorial on planning and conducting these studies, organised by WHO and BfR. 20 representatives of countries, planning to conduct their own TDS in the future took part. For Germany, BfR has been conducting one of the most comprehensive total diet studies to date, the BfR-MEAL study, since 2015. "The quality of a risk assessment is based on the quality of the available data," says BfR President Professor Dr Dr Andreas Hensel. "Total diet studies - such as our BfR MEAL study - show exactly what amounts of substances are contained in our food after preparation. We are happy to share the expertise we have gathered in the process with partner authorities in other countries."

Further information on the BfR MEAL study:

Several workshops on TDS have been held in the past. From the first workshop in Kansas City (1999) to the last in Seoul (2015), significant progress has been made in this field. Over the years, methodologies have been optimised, lessons learned and exchanges between TDS-supporting countries have been achieved. In addition, more and more low- and middle-income countries have either initiated or shown interest in implementing TDS. The sixth workshop, which took place as a hybrid event on-site in Berlin and online, continued this knowledge transfer. Experts from China, South Korea, Canada and other countries reported on their national TDS results. The BfR plans to publish the video recordings of these lectures afterwards. In the preceding online tutorial, the Study Centre for TDS at the BfR and other internationally renowned consumer health protection authorities, such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the Dutch Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu (RIVM), shared their expertise on how to successfully set up and conduct a TDS.

More fish in Iceland, more meat in the USA - what people eat and what substances they ingest and in what quantities can differ greatly depending on the country. A total diet study can be used to measure which substances are contained in the foods we typically eat. The method can be tailored to country-specific foods and preparation methods and is therefore an interesting tool for health authorities worldwide.

The BfR MEAL Study (Mahlzeiten für die Expositionsschätzung und Analytik von Lebensmitteln - "meals for exposure assessment and analysis of foods") is the first total diet study (TDS) for Germany. The study takes into account more than 90 percent of the foods most commonly consumed in Germany and analyses the foods in each case as they are typically consumed as ready meals in Germany. The goal is to better identify health risks from food for the German population. In total, the BfR MEAL Study examines about 60,000 individual foods for almost 300 desirable and undesirable substances. The Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) is funding the study with around 13 million euros.

About the BfR

The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) is a scientifically independent institution within the portfolio of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) in Germany. It advises the Federal Government and Federal Laender on questions of food, chemical and product safety. The BfR conducts its own research on topics that are closely linked to its assessment tasks.

This text version is a translation of the original German text which is the only legally binding version.

There are no documents on your notepad

There are no documents in your cart

Cookie Notice

This site only uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. Find out more on how we use cookies in our Data Protection Declaration.