Human Biomonitoring at Food Authorities

Human Biomonitoring as a Tool in Policy Making

Human biomonitoring (HBM) can be defined as the systematic standardized measurement of a concentration of a substance or its metabolites in human tissues and is an important tool in evaluating exposure to chemicals. This report maps HBM studies performed at or initiated by food safety authorities in the Nordic countries and discuss problems and options for further work. The report shows that only few studies have been performed and it differs among the countries. Reasons for this could be that sampling blood and urine is demanding, there are ethical and privacy issues and analytical costs are high. More cooperation with researchers and between countries is needed. Food safety authorities have special responsibilities in cases of emergencies and disasters. In these cases HBM provides a good tool for exposure measurement but cooperation and infrastructure should be established beforehand.