Harmonisation of food categorisation systems for dietary exposure assessments among European children.
De Neve M., Sioen I., Boon PE., Arganini C., Moschandreas J., Ruprich J., Lafay L., Amiano P., Arcella D., Azpiri M., Busk L., Christensen T., D'addezio L., Fabiansson S., Hilbig A., Hirvonen T., Kersting M., Koulouridaki S., Liukkonen K-H., Oltarzewski M., Papoutsou S., Rehurkova I., Ribas-Barba L., Serra-Majem L., Tornaritis M., Trolle E., Van Klaveren JD., Verger E., Walkiewicz A., Westerlund A., De Henauw S., Huybrechts I.
Within the European project called EXPOCHI (Individual Food Consumption Data and Exposure Assessment Studies for Children), 14 different European individual food consumption databases of children were used to conduct harmonised dietary exposure assessments for lead, chromium, selenium and food colours. For this, two food categorisation systems were developed to classify the food consumption data in such a way that these could be linked to occurrence data of the considered compounds. One system served for the exposure calculations of lead, chromium and selenium. The second system was developed for the exposure assessment of food colours. The food categories defined for the lead, chromium and selenium exposure calculations were used as a basis for the food colour categorisation, with adaptations to optimise the linkage with the food colour occurrence data. With this work, an initial impetus was given to make user-friendly food categorisation systems for contaminants and food colours applicable on a pan-European level. However, a set of difficulties were encountered in creating a common food categorisation system for 14 individual food consumption databases that differ in the type and number of foods coded and in level of detail provided about the consumed foods. The work done and the problems encountered in this project can be of interest for future projects in which food consumption data will be collected on a pan-European level and used for common exposure assessments.