Feed safety platform

Species-specific detection of processed animal proteins in animal feed

Type of the activity: research project
Financing: 6th European Commission Framework Programme
Duration of the project:  12/2006 – 12/2009


Since the earliest case of the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) epidemic was first confirmed in the United Kingdom in 1987, strict legislation was set up year after year. This has been done taking into account new scientific and epidemiologic evidences showing that meat and bone meal are the most probable vector of the disease. Nowadays, the European Commission has come to the stage that amendments of certain measures could be envisaged, without endangering the health or the policy of eradicating BSE, provided that the positive trend continues and scientific conditions are in place. The scientific conditions regarding the amendments of the total feed ban include the development and validation of analytical methods and tools for the detection of the presence of species-specific animal proteins in animal feed. Actually, the existing methods do not allow species-specific identification and lead to the impossibility to lift the total ban. The SAFEED-PAP project aims to complete the scientific conditions that should allow the repealing of the extended feed ban.

Project description


The SAFEED-PAP project has three main objectives that should lead to solve the problematic of the species specific detection of animal proteins in compound feeds:

  1. Development and validation of suitable methods for the species specific detection and quantification of animal protein in compound feed in order to allow the amendment of the extended total ban;
  2. Development of tools and analytical kits for the correct implementation of the methods in the labs;
  3. To set up the appropriate environment for the optimum application of the methods.

To achieve these strategic objectives, 7 work packages (WP) have been defined.

  • WP1- Coordination and Management of the project
  • WP2- Improvement and validation of test kits
  • WP3- Development of confirmatory methods using HPLC or MS/MS
  • WP4- Development of methods for the quantitative detection and for the species-specific quantitative identification of animal particles by NIRM Microscopy and PCR technics
  • WP5- Improvement of the official method and development of a screening method for the control laboratories
  • WP6- Validation of methods and feasibility study for the production of certified reference materials
  • WP7- Transfer, utilisation and dissemination of results

Main partners

The SAFEED-PAP consortium coordinated by the CRA-W includes 13 partners (research institutes, universities, private and official control laboratories and SME). The SAFEED-PAP consortium includes European leader research teams involved in the development of analytical methods for the detection of animal proteins and the proper implementation of the method.
Project team

Coordination :
Dr Vincent Baeten
CRA-W – Quality Department for Agricultural Products
Chaussée de Namur, 24
B 5030 Gembloux

Tel : +32 (0)81 62 03 50
Fax : +32 (0)81 62 03 88
Email :

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