Research and development on nanoscale-science (particles of 1-100 nanometer) has been growing worldwide. Government authorities in several countries have established funding and coordinating mechanisms to support their national nanotechnology research programmes. There are still only relatively few commercialized applications of nanotechnology.
In areas of agriculture and food production, a number of applications of nanotechnologies are emerging with the capacity to impact both the food industry and consumers (e.g. food processing and packaging, production of agrochemicals and seed).
Like other new or modern technologies, nanotechnology has the potential to bring significant benefits, but may also introduce potential risks for human health and the environment. Nano-materials may cause health risks which are different from those of similar materials in micro or macro form. Therefore, WHO together with FAO will provide member states with sound scientific advice on the assessment of foods related to nanotechnologies.
Public review - FAO/WHO Paper
State of the art on the initiatives and activities relevant to risk assessment and risk management of nanotechnologies in the food and agriculture sectors