Science committees

The work of the independent committees and working groups that advise us helps to ensure that our advice to consumers is always based on the best and most recent scientific evidence.
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Advisory Committee on Animal Feedingstuffs

Advisory Committee on Animal Feedingstuffs (ACAF) advises on the safety and use of animal feeds and feeding practices, with particular emphasis on protecting human health, and with reference to new technical developments.

Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes 

The Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes (ACNFP) is a non-statutory, independent body of scientific experts that advises the Food Standards Agency on any matters relating to novel foods (including genetically modified foods) and novel processes (including food irradiation).

Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food

The Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food provides expert advice to Government on questions relating to microbiological issues and food.

Committee on Toxicity 

The Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment (COT) is an independent scientific committee that provides advice to the Food Standards Agency, the Department of Health and other Government Departments and Agencies on matters concerning the toxicity of chemicals. 

Committee on Carcinogenicity 

The Committee on Carcinogenicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment (COC) assesses and gives advice on carcinogenic risk to humans.

Committee on Mutagenicity 

The Committee on Mutagenicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment (COM) assesses and advises on mutagenic risks to humans. You can find more information about the committee on mutagenicity on GOV.UK.

Science Council

The FSA Science Council is an independent expert committee of the Food Standards Agency, comprising a Chair and seven members.

Cross Scientific Advisory Committee

The cross Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) working group on the framework for risky foods was set up in 2016, with members drawn from four of the FSA SACs. Find out members, latest meeting minutes and meeting papers.

Veterinary Products Committee 

The Veterinary Products Committee (VPC) was established to advise on the safety, quality and efficacy of veterinary medicines, and to consider reports of suspected adverse reactions to veterinary medicines.

Defra Expert Committee on Pesticide Residues in Food

The Pesticide Residues Committee (PRiF) was replaced by the Defra Expert Committee on Pesticide Residues in Food. They provide independent scientific advice on pesticide residues in the UK's food.

The Committee advises Ministers and our Chief Executives and the Chemicals Regulation Directorate (CRD) on the planning of surveillance programmes for pesticide residues in the UK food supply and the evaluation of the results, and procedures for sampling, sample processing and new methods of analysis.

Advisory Committee on Pesticides 

The Advisory Committee on Pesticides (ACP) is an independent body which advises Ministers on all matters relating to the control of pesticides. Members provide scientific advice on the safe and effective use of pesticides and other pest control methods.

Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens

An Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) TSE risk assessment subgroup has been established to provide independent expert advice in this area to the FSA and other departments, following the abolition of the Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee (SEAC) in 2011.

Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition

The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) is a UK-wide Advisory Committee replaced the Committee on Medical Aspects of Food and Nutrition Policy (COMA).

Advisory Committee for Social Science

The Advisory Committee for Social Science is an independent expert committee of the Food Standards Agency.

It provides expert strategic advice to the FSA on its use of the social sciences including new and emerging methods, processes and systems to interrogate data, to deliver FSA’s objectives. Its purpose is to help FSA utilise these sciences and approaches to shape and deliver its strategic objectives and understand its impact.

Social Science Research Committee

The Social Science Research Committee (SSRC) provides advice to the Agency about how it gathers and uses social science evidence.

Closed committees

Following a review of scientific advisory committees, the General Advisory Committee on Science (GACS) was replaced by a new Science Council on 1 April 2017. The Science Council provides high level, strategic insight and challenge to the Agency on its use of science.