Action levels are set to reduce the dioxin intake of the European Community population. Action levels have to be distinguished from maximum legal limits. Action levels are set in order to stimulate a pro-active approach and are meant as a tool for competent authorities and operators to highlight those cases where it is appropriate to identify a source of contamination and to take measures to reduce or eliminate it.
Dioxin action limits aready existed for vegetable oils and their by-products intended for animal feed via Annex II of Directive 2002/32/EC .
The action levels in oilseeds for human consumptions are set via Commision Recommendation 2014/663/EU (amending the Annex to Recommendation 2013/711/EU on the reduction of the presence of dioxins, furans and PCBs in feed and food). The action level for dioxins + furans amounts to 0,5 pg/g wet weight and for dioxin-like PCBs the action level amounts to 0,35 pg/g wet weight. Both levels are expressed in WHO toxic equivalents.