Draft Guideline 10: Notification templates


This guideline contains all templates used for the creation of RASFF notifications including explanation for the various fields and how they should be filled in.

The following templates are used for the creation of RASFF notifications:

name / use / version
Market notification / Original notification about a product which has been placed on the E.E.A. market / 3.0
border rejection notification / Notification about the rejection of a product at the outer EEA border. / 3.0
follow-up / additional information notification / Notification adding information to an original notification. / 3.0
recipients list / List detailing the specific distribution of consignments of a product in a country. / 1.3

If macros are allowed in your Microsoft Word application, you can use the RASFF menu in the menu bar to quickly "jump" to other sections of the form or to save the form data as a text file for import in e.g. a database application. Choose "text file" in the Save as type listbox to save the data entered into the form as a comma delimited text file.

For many fields of the notification templates a message is integrated in the template on how the field should be used. The message is displayed in the status bar of Microsoft Word. Therefore, please make sure that the status bar is visible. When a more detailed help message is available, this is mentioned in the status bar with the words “press F1 for more info”.

For some fields more detailed information is given in this guideline as reference material. Fields that occur in more than one template are explained in the table for the market notification template. For the other templates, explanations for fields specific to those templates are given.

Market notification template

box / name / explanation /
- / legal reference in title / Choose Regulation 178/2002 for all matters that fall into the scope of this regulation (food safety – food and feed) and choose Regulation 183/2005 only for those matters that only fall into the scope of Regulation 183/2005 but not in the scope of Regulation 178/2002 (feed – animal health or environmental risk).
4 / basis for the notification / Explains the type of event at the basis of the notification: mostly it concerns an official control on the market or at the border. In some cases a product presenting a risk is first detected because of a consumer complaint, company own check or a food poisoning outbreak. In such cases, this event is entered here, even if the event was followed-up by an official control. It should however be made clear if the sample was not taken officially; box 14 method can be used to that purpose. Border control can be an official control on a consignment that is held at the border and subsequently rejected or it can be an official screening sample of a consignment that was cleared by customs (i.e. "consignment released"). For the case of a consignment held at the border and rejected, a specific RASFF template “border rejection” is foreseen.
5 / related RASFF notification n°: / Fill in the reference number of the original notification if the product is related to the product notified in this original notification and the risks identified there could also be relevant to the current notification. The use of this field creates a link between both notifications. Box 22 explains the nature of that link.
7 / countries flagged for action / When transmitting a notification, the notifying member country indicates through flagging which other member countries are concerned and are supposed to act. As with all boxes in the “general information” section, box 7 is meant for completion by the NCP just before transmitting the notification to the Commission. It will allow other member countries to rapidly verify their involvement in the notification.
8 / hazard category / Enter the hazard category, appropriate to the hazards found. In case there are hazards found belonging to two ore more categories, use the other box to enter the other categories. The Commission maintains a list of hazards classified by hazard category as reference material.
9 / hazards found / Enter the hazards that were evaluated as unacceptable risks (according to legislation or risk evaluation).
10 / results of the tests / 6 separate fields are provided for a maximum of 6 separate values to be entered. The analytical units in which the results are expressed can be selected from a listbox at the end. If there are different units used, they can be typed in with the result.
11 / counter analysis / The counter analysis list has four values:
none: no counter analysis was requested;
ongoing: the counter analysis was requested and is ongoing, the result not being known yet;
confirmed: the counter analysis was carried out and confirmed the original result;
not confirmed: the counter analysis was carried out but did not confirm the original result. In the latter case more information should be provided as to why the notification should nevertheless be transmitted.
12 / sampling dates / 6 separate fields are provided for a maximum of 6 separate values to be entered.
15 / sampling place / Place were the samples was taken: use the listbox provided or the field other if the place is not among the list entries.
17 / sample treatment/
analytical matrix / What treatment has the sample undergone prior to analysis, or on which part of the sample the analysis was carried out, especially if this treatment could be relevant to the interpretation of the result e.g. washing, drying, fat extraction etc.
18 / method of analysis / If a specific analytical method was applied, e.g. one described in legislation or in an EN or international standard, enter it here.
21 / product category / Choose the product category from the list or enter it into the other field if the category is not among the entries of the list or if there are more than one (for more than one product belonging to different categories).
22 / product relation / Relation between the notified product and the previously notified product (see box 4). The notification can be about one or more new consignments of an identical product, a different variety of product or can be a raw material or ingredient to the previously notified product or a processed product thereof.
23 / product name (on label) / Precise product name, characterising the product, without using any commercial name; often the product name can be found on the packaging.
29 / distribution status / Distribution status on the EEA market of the consignment(s) involved at the time of the original notification. In order to choose a distribution status, consider the possible distribution of all product presenting a risk in the EEA, taking into account not only the known distribution but also the possible distribution by a supplier (abroad).
30 / risk / Gives information about the evaluation of the risk:
-  whether the risk is considered to be serious;
-  concern: what is the nature of the risk: a human health, animal health or environmental risk;
-  motivation: why was the risk evaluated as serious (only to be added when the evaluation as serious risk is not straight forward).
33 / scope / If not "European" (default), choose another value from the list. If it concerns a European Directive, transposed into national law, choose “European” instead of “national”. Choose only “national” for legal requirements that are not harmonised on EU level.
35 / voluntary measures / Measures taken by the business operator at the own initiative of the business operator. Several measures can be combined. User the other field for measures that are not listed.
36 / compulsory measures / Measures ordered by the official food or feed control authority. Several measures can be combined. Use the other field for measures that are not listed.
39-44 / consignment information / 4 separate fields are provided for a maximum of 4 separate values to be entered.
46-51 / business operators at the origin of the product / Up to two business operators in relation to the origin of the product can be entered here with full detail. Select the type of business operator according to the following choices:
-  exporter in TC: operator in third country (TC) that has exported the product to the EEA
-  manufacturer (in the EEA or in TC)
-  producer (primary production)
52,53 / distributed by / Enter the business operators involved in the distribution of the product. Only their type and name if it concerns an operator related to the origin of the product, for which the details were already given in boxes 46-51.
54-59 / business operators distributing the product. / Up to two business operators distributing the product can be entered here with full detail. Select the type of business operator according to the following choices:
-  dispatcher in EEA: operator that dispatched the product inside the EEA (the operator is located in the EEA and further upstream traceability information is not available)
-  importer in EEA: operator who imported the product in the EEA (the operator is located in the EEA)
-  wholesaler (in the EEA)
-  retailer (in the EEA)
60, 62 / distribution to member countries / to third countries / Enter the names of countries to which the product was distributed according to information available in this notification. If the distribution is yet unknown, then enter "unknown". If you are certain that no distribution has taken place from your country, enter "no", "none" or "not from [Country]".
61, 63 / distribution list attached / For the countries mentioned, indicate if distribution lists are available and attached to the notification. Preferably one list should be made per country involved, using the RASFF template for recipients provided.
64 / dispatching port / Enter the place (seaport, airport) in the third country from where the consignment/container was dispatched.
65 / product CN code / Enter the Common Nomenclature code for the product concerned.
72 / container and seal numbers / 4 separate fields are provided for a maximum of 4 separate values to be entered for each container / seal.
73 / organisation/ministry / Organisation responsible for issuing the notification (to which the SCPCACP belongs).
74 / contact person / Person who can be contacted for more information about the notification.
75 / other information / Information that is important as background or to detail the notification further, but that does not fit in the structured elements of the notification.
76 / attached documents / Tick the documents attached to the notification. Mention document types that are not listed in other. Indicate which documents are / can be made available to third parties and/or the public by ticking the box.
77 / What information can be made available to third parties? / Indicate what information concerning the identification of the product (boxes 24-28) or traceability of the product (boxes 39-44 and 52-63) or contact person (box 74) which are or can be made available to third parties and/or the public. Enter the numbers of the fields that can be made available or enter "none" (default) if none of the mentioned information can be released. By third parties are meant anyone who is not part of the official food and feed control authorities of a RASFF member country and who is not directly concerned by the notification. This does not include companies or third countries concerned by the notification and goes without prejudice to the provisions of article 52 of Regulation (EC) N° 178/2002.
78 / Reason / There needs to be a specific purpose to release the information mentioned in box 77. This box contains the reason why the information is made available and to whom it is made available.

follow-up / additional information notification template

box / name / explanation /
4 / follow-up type / Informs of what kind of information is contained in the reaction.
6 / product concerned / Informs about what product the reaction provides additional information: it could be the originally notified product or a related product.
8 / consignment(s) concerned / What consignments are concerned by the reaction?
11 / used sections / What sections of the form have been filled? This allows skipping the empty sections easier.
32 / point of departure / Place from where the rejected consignment(s) are being redispatched to a destination outside the EEA.
33 / date and time of departure / Date and time when the rejected consignment(s) leave for their destination outside the EEA.
34 / destination / Tick either origin (redispatched to origin) or enter the destination in other.
36 / shipping route / Enter the route (ports or countries etc.) through which the transport vessel travels on route to destination.
37 / transhipment / Enter information about the transhipment if one takes place on route to destination.

list of recipients template

This template exists in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel format.

name / explanation /
notification reference / Reference of the notification to which the distribution list belongs (including the reference to the additional information notification where appropriate).
product identification / Product name and any relevant characteristic of the product, differentiating the product distributed from other products, e.g. best before date, brand name, unit weight, visual aspects etc.
name of dispatcher / Name of the company that has distributed the products on the list.

Lists of values used

Market notification template

box / name / values /
1 / notification type / food, feed, food contact material
8 / hazard category / see file "hazards per category" for guidance in selecting a precise value
10 / results of the tests / List with analytical units in which the results are expressed. If the units required are not in the list, then simply type them in after the result.
11 / counter analysis / none, ongoing, confirmed, not confirmed (see explanation under "market notification template")
15 / sampling place / retailer, wholesaler, importer (in the EEA), dispatcher, manufacturer, point of entry, producer
21 / product category / see file "product categories"
22 / product relation / additional lots, different variety, ingredient, processed product, raw material
28 / unit weight/volume / list of units for weight/volume
29 / distribution status / distribution on the market (possible), distribution restricted to notifying country, information on distribution not (yet) available, no distribution, no stock left, product already consumed, product expired (past use-by date), product expired (past best before date)
(see explanation under "market notification template")
30 / concern / human health, animal health, environment
33 / scope / European, national, international standard
34 / max. permitted level / list of analytical units to express the legal limit in
35 / voluntary measures / ·  product (to be) recalled from consumers, returned to dispatcher (returned to the company who sent the product, if the product was only distributed one level deep), withdrawn from the market (the product is no longer being sold)
·  after recall/withdrawal: product (to be): destroyed, relabeled
·  physical treatment – acid treatment, blanching (for nuts contaminated with aflatoxins), freezing, heat treatment, sorting (also for nuts contaminated with aflatoxins)
36 / compulsory measures / ·  product (to be): recalled from consumers, returned to dispatcher, withdrawn from the market
·  after recall/withdrawal: product (to be): destroyed, detained (= not definitive), relabeled, seized
·  physical treatment – acid treatment, blanching (for nuts contaminated with aflatoxins), freezing, heat treatment, sorting (also for nuts contaminated with aflatoxins)
44 / description of the lot / total gross / net weight/volume + units of weight and volume
46, 49, / select 1, 2 / type of operator: exporter in TC (operator who exported to the EEA), manufacturer, producer (primary product), trader/broker (not handling the product, only the commercial transaction)
52, 53 / select / distributed by: manufacturer, producer
54, 57 / select 3, 4 / type of operator: dispatcher in EEA (manufacturer unknown), importer in EEA, wholesaler, retailer

border rejection template