Following the publication of Commission Regulation (EU) 2018/222 the responsibilities of the EURL for Monitoring Bacteriological and Viral Contamination of Bivalve Molluscs at Cefas have been transferred to the EU Reference Laboratories for the analysis and testing of zoonoses (salmonella) (, the EU reference laboratory for Escherichia coli, including verotoxigenic E. coli (vtec) (, and the EU reference laboratory for foodborne viruses The EU reference laboratory for the monitoring of marine biotoxins has taken over the activities related to the classification and monitoring of production areas for bivalve molluscs ( Information on Cefas’ International Reference Laboratory activities can be found at

The following good practice guides for the microbiological monitoring and classification of bivalve mollusc production areas are available to download. These guides aim to assist Competent Authorities and other stakeholders to implement robust scientifically based official control programmes.

The Community Guide to the Principles of Good Practice for the Microbiological Classification and Monitoring of Bivalve Mollusc Production and Relaying Areas with regard to Regulation 854/2004 was developed by a working group of the European Commission and is officially endorsed by EU Member States through the Standing Committee of the Food Chain and Animal Health. It provides the key principles that should be followed in implementing an official control monitoring programme in accordance with EU Regulation 854/2004

This guide is also available from the European Commission website External Link

The Microbiological Monitoring of Bivalve Molluscs Harvesting Areas. Guide to Good Practice:Technical Application it is more detailed guidance document was developed by an EU expert working group. It supports the Community guidance with more detailed technical assistance. It is aimed at officials and other stakeholders closely involved in the implementation of official control monitoring programmes. 

  • Official Control Guides