Building Trust and Capacity for Safe Food in Vietnam

Date: Tuesday, 7 November 2017
Time: 9:00am – 2:00pm
Venue: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Draft Agenda

The World Bank report (Challenges and opportunities in Vietnam) 

Background:  In 2016, a report (Challenges and opportunities in Vietnam) on food safety was produced by the World Bank and partners at the request of the Government of Vietnam. This report assesses food safety risks and provides policy recommendations on how to improve food safety risk management in Vietnam. The report presents the key findings to help identify priorities and practical solutions to address food safety.  


Key findings: 
  • Food safety is a major concern for the public, with high levels of anxiety each time there is a high-profile food safety incident
  • Vietnam’s reputation amongst its trading partners as a major exporter of food products is vulnerable to trade statistics showing levels of contamination
  • Food-borne illness is notoriously difficult to assess in any country but the level of contamination found in Vietnamese food for domestic consumption justifies public and trade concerns
  • Without action by government, these problems are likely to worsen:
    o   Food safety scares are highly topical and each case is likely to be exploited by the media;

    o   International trade will become increasingly competitive with the new trade agreements;

    o   Increasing urbanisation puts pressure on traditional ways of providing food.
  • The report found that the primary cause of food-borne illness comes from bacterial contamination, rather than from chemicals, which could be prevented by better levels of food hygiene throughout the value chain
  • High use of agricultural inputs such as antibiotics, pesticides and chemical fertilisers, poorly regulated or illegal imports, lack of traceability and cross-contamination are also important factors in assuring safe food but the biggest challenge lies in changing the practices of vast numbers of small producers
  • Vietnam has a modern food safety regulatory framework with foundations in place for further improving food safety performance and outcomes.  However, much more could be done to make it result-focused and risk-based
  • There is no single answer to food safety issues but international experience provides many tested ideas which, in the right combination, should gradually improve levels of food safety


The event aims to gather FIA members, key stakeholders/partners and government representatives for a dialogue session that focuses on building trust and capacity for safe food in Vietnam along with the issues that were highlighted in the World Bank: Challenges and Opportunities report. 

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