Recent public health emergencies revealed gaps in our preparedness planning and response strategies and capacities. They made clear that multi-sectoral collaboration and preparedness by critical sectors such as information technology, energy and transport are a key to minimise the effects of a future major health emergency across the society. The 2011 E.coli outbreak in Europe demonstrated that a public health crisis could have major consequences on the economy. Besides the public health consequences, this emergency resulted in losses of more than €800m in the agricultural sector, caused major international trade disruption and mistrust from consumers. Such consequences can even be more pressing in the context of a pandemic.