FIA Video: Lab Capacity-building to Strengthen Food Safety Systems

Laboratory training for food safety scientists, including those in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), to carry out appropriate lab testing to verify the efficacy of food safety management systems, is critical for building trust in food safety, says Dr Paul Young, Senior Director, Government Affairs, Waters Corporation.

Dr Young was part of the FIA delegation involved in the Second GMS Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting (GMS AMM-2) in September in Siem Reap, Cambodia. FIA and representatives from its member companies Nestlé, Cargill, GS1 and Waters Corporation, engaged in multi-stakeholder dialogue with representatives from regional governments and development organisations, which focused on strengthening food safety systems in the GMS.

Dr Young led the proposal to establish mechanisms for laboratory capacity-building for food safety scientists across the GMS, supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The development of scalable, sustainable capacity-building programmes to train these scientists enables effective, fit-for-purpose lab testing for food safety, which forms the cornerstone of food safety control. Whilst the testing does not create safe food per se, it plays an important role in verification of food safety management systems, in surveillance of in-market foods to serve as an early warning of issues, and often in ensuring market access through product certification. This is only possible, however, if there is a high degree of trust that the testing is being carried out in accordance with international best practices.

Dr Paul Young, Senior Director, Government Affairs, Waters Corporation, discusses technical and technological solutions to drive water and food safety during the Siem Reap Policy Forum in Siem Reap, Cambodia, on 6 September 2017.

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