Are your food containers as healthy as your food? Participate in the Survey!

Published on: 
Friday, April 7, 2023
Last updated on 18-4-2023 by Cassandre Dugailliez

In order to reduce the amount of packaging waste, the zero-waste trend (bying food in bulk) has recently developed. It is characterisez by the purchase, transport and storage of food using its own containers. But is this trend safe? No information is yet available on the subject and, consequently, on the potential risks associated with this practice. Sciensano, as a center of  excellence in evaluating potential risks of known and emerging contaminants in food contact materials (FCM), designed a survey to address this gap.
Reducing packaging waste without compromising safety is possible thanks to your contribution!

Participate in the survey!

Food contact materials (FCM) are materials and items specifically designed to come into contact with food during its production, processing, storage, preparation or serving. FCM can be constructed from a wide variety of materials like plastics, rubber, paper and board, metals and alloys, ceramics, but also the printing inks and adhesives used on the outside of the packaging.

Bulk food purchasing can be a source of potential health risks, such as allergies. For example, cross-contamination may occur when the same packaging is used for different foods, or the accessibility and traceability of allergen information may be insufficient. Thanks to this study, in collaboration with the University of Hasselt, we want to collect as much data as possible in order to assess these risks properly.

Sciensano belongs to the European network of Reference Laboratories for food contact materials and collaborates with national and European authorities to support the implementation of their respective public health policies (e.g. FPS, FASFC, EFSA, …).

Are you going for zero-waste, and do you often buy bulk foods?

Take part in this survey and help us assess potential health risks related to buying food in bulk. You can also complete the survey in Dutch or French.

Would you like to have additional information?

Visit the TREFCOM project webpage or send an e-mail to

Sharing is caring!

Feel free to share this survey as widely as possible among your colleagues, friends and family who buy food in bulk (who are 18 or older and live in Belgium). We are counting on you!

Who initiated this study?

The survey is part of the TRECOM project, an initiative of Sciensano, the Belgian institute of health, and the University of Hasselt, led by the following researchers: Karlien Cheyns, Heidi Demaegdt, Salvatore Ciano, Mélanie Di Mario, Severine Goscinny, Birgit Mertens, Els Van Hoeck, Stefanie Vandevijvere, Eveline Verleysen.

Protection of your data and rights 

Participation is voluntary, and you can discontinue your participation at any time. The information you provide via the questionnaire will only be used for the abovementioned goals. Sciensano will only use this information to compile general statistics. Scientific publications can be created based on the research results, but your individual data will never be passed on to third parties.

Questions or complaints about data protection

If you have any questions about data protection, please contact the Sciensano Data Protection Officer via or 02/642 51 02. If you have a complaint about how your data is being processed, you can contact the Belgian data protection authority: Drukpersstraat 35 — 1000 Brussels — Tel.: 02/274 48 00 — e-mail:

Associated health topics: 

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