Food safety and quality
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Focal Point Information

Organization/agency name (Full name):
Icelandi Food and Veterinary Authority
Contact person name:
Grímur Ólafsson
Physical full address:
Austurvegur 64, 800 Selfoss
Phone number:
+354 530 4800
Fax number:
+354 530 4801
Country introduction

The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority –(Icelandic name: Matvælastofnun – MAST) is the Competent Authority (CA) in Iceland in the field of food safety, animal health and welfare, control of feed, seed and fertilizers, plant health and water for human consumption. MAST is therefore the CA for GM food and GM feed but The Environment Agency of Iceland is the CA for GM organisms (such as contained use, deliberate release, cultivation and marketing of GMOs).

Iceland is not a member State of the European Union but is one of the Contracting Parties to the European Economic Area (EEA Agreement), which is an agreement between the EFTA States and the Community and the EU Member States. Consequently, Iceland is implementing the EU legislation on foodstuffs, veterinary matters, feed and other food chain related issues. Still, Iceland has not adopted the EU legislation on authorization, labelling and traceability of GM food and GM feed (EU regulations no. 1829/2003 and no. 1830/2003).

Iceland has a national legislation on labelling and traceability of GM food (regulation no. 1038/2010) which was implemented in December 2010. According to that regulation, food business operators must obtain information on whether food is genetically modified and make sure that the labelling and the traceability of the food complies with the provisions of the regulation, as well as the provisions of the general Food Labelling Regulation No 1169/2011  (Icelandic reg. no. 503/2005) and the Icelandic Food Act (no. 93/1995). The Icelandic regulation on labelling and traceability of GM food does not cover a marketing authorization of GM food. Therefore, no assessments are carried out on GM foodstuffs before they are placed on the market.

However, Iceland has adopted the EU directive no. 2001/18 on the deliberate release into the environment of genetically modified organisms regulated by The Environment Agency of Iceland (Icelandic regulation no. 728/2011). According to that regulation, a risk assessment and an authorization from The Environment Agency of Iceland are needed before GMOs are deliberately released into the environment or placed on the market. Other legislation in force in Iceland concerning GMOs are the Act on genetically modified organisms no. 18/1996, Regulation no. 275/2002 on contained use of GM micro-organisms and Regulation no. 276/2002 on contained use of GMOs other than micro-organisms. The Environment Agency of Iceland is the CA for these regulations.

Regulatory framework:
My country does not have a regulatory framework that requires the competent authority to conduct safety assessment of GM food.
Structure for GM food safety assessment:
My country is in the process in developing a structure for GM food safety assessment.
Supplemental information:
Contact details of the competent authority(s) responsible for the safety assessment and the product applicant:
GM food safety assessment guidelines:
My country does not conduct safety assessment of GM food but the country has, or the country is in the process of developing national/regional guidelines that are in line with the Codex Guidelines in conducting safety assessment of GM food.
Conduct of GM food safety assessment:
My country has never conducted food safety assessment of GM food but is planning to conduct such assessment in the near future.
Supplemental information on the implementation:

If Iceland desides to implement regulations or guidlines for GMO food safety assessment, it will be based on EU legislation/guidelines.

Stacked events
Regulation of stacked events:
There is no regulations in my country on stacked events.
Supplemental information on the stacked events:
Production and trade
GM food/feed production:
My country does not produce any GM food or feed.
GM food/feed imports:
My country may import GM food or feed and there is no authorization process.
Supplemental information on the production and trade:
LLP/AP incidents
LLP/AP incidents:
My country does not monitor LLP/AP situations.
Supplemental information on the LLP/AP incidents:
Labelling requirement
Labelling requirement:
My country has a mandatory and positive labeling regulation & allows a voluntary and negative labeling on GM food.
Supplemental information on the Labelling requirement:
Relevant links to documents and information prepared by the competent authority responsible for the safety assessment
Other relevant documents:
Country information last modified: