EFSA Press Release, 12 November 2012
Catherine Geslain-Lanéelle, Executive Director of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), today welcomed high-level representatives from the Cypriot Presidency of the EU, the European Parliament and the European Commission’s Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG SANCO), along with the Italian Minister of Health and the Mayor of Parma, to the official inauguration of EFSA’s new purpose-built headquarters in Parma. Sue Davies, the recently elected Chair of EFSA’s Management Board, unveiled a plaque to mark the occasion.
The building’s completion was a testament to European cooperation and in particular to cooperation between EFSA and the Italian authorities in Parma and Rome, Ms Geslain-Lanéelle told the gathering. “We are proud that the EU flag is waving in Parma,” she added.
Ms Davies said that the inauguration was “a special day for EFSA and a special day for Parma”.
Each of the distinguished guests highlighted the spirit of cooperation and the vital contribution EFSA’s independent scientific advice has made to improving food safety in the EU since the Authority’s establishment 10 years ago. As well as Ms Geslain-Lanéelle and Ms Davies, there were speeches from:
Ms Geslain-Lanéelle thanked the architects Art and Build, the site managers Studio Valle, the constructors UNIECO and the Comune di Parma, who she said had delivered a building that is practical, safe, ecologically well designed, and – importantly in the midst of a city so rich in art, history and culture – aesthetically harmonious. As well as EFSA’s 450-strong staff, the building is used regularly by more than 1,000 scientific experts who visit the Authority to attend scientific meetings.
The inauguration takes place on the occasion of EFSA’s tenth anniversary, which the Authority has marked with a series of special scientific and institutional activities: a Scientific Conference, “Challenging Boundaries in Risk Assessment – Sharing Experiences”, was held last week; and a joint EFSA-DG SANCO institutional conference, “EFSA@10 – Ready for the Challenges of Tomorrow”, takes place tomorrow, when delegates will help to map out the Authority’s strategic direction and operating context for the coming years.