The world is today marking the first ever UN World Food Safety Day that aims at raising awareness about dangers of unsafe food under the theme; “Food safety is everyone’s Business”.
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) says some 600 million people fall sick annually due to contaminated food.
This means that one in ten people globally get sick from food – contaminated by bacteria, viruses, parasites or chemical substances.
Tedros said governments, producers, handlers and consumers should be more aware of dangers of unsafe food.
Worldwide activities for World Food Safety Day are aiming to inspire action to help prevent, detect and manage foodborne health risks. “From farm to plate, we all have a role to play in making food safe”, Tedros counseled.
“There is no food security without food safety,” says FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva, adding that whether a farmer, farm supplier, food processor, transporter, marketer or consumer, food safety is your business.
Unsafe food strain health care systems and harming national economies, tourism, trade and development just as food safety contributes to food security – human health, economic prosperity, agriculture, market access, tourism and sustainable development.
WHO estimates that unsafe food annually costs $95 billion in productivity in many low- and middle-income economies because workers suffer related illnesses, disability and premature death.
The UN explains that there is need to improve hygiene practices in food and agricultural sectors to reduce emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance along the food chain and in the environment.
The UN General Assembly has decided to designate 7 June as World Food Safety Day considering the urgent need to raise awareness, promote and facilitate actions for global food safety.