Each year on June 7th, World Food Safety Day (WSFD) is commemorated to assist avoid, detect, and control foodborne risks. According to the World Health Organisation, the goal of the day is to emphasise on food security and highlight many aspects related to human health, economic success, agriculture, market access, tourism, and sustainable development.
The topic can be asked as a Current Affairs Question in IAS Prelims and Mains.
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History of World Food Safety Day
The United Nations General Assembly designated 7th June to be World Food Safety Day every year in the year of 2018. After the intergovernmental body noticed that the burden of foodborne infections was disproportionately affecting children under the age of five and people living in low income areas, the law went into effect. It’s a global collaboration between WHO and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, as well as other member governments and organisations, to minimise possible health concerns posed by food borne diseases.
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Note: IAS exam could ask basic facts about this topic as it holds international as well as domestic importance.
Food Safety and Sustainable Development Goals
Food safety is critical to reaching some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and World Food Safety Day puts it front and centre to assist prevent, identify, and control foodborne hazards. Food safety benefits the economy by promoting agriculture, market access, tourism, and long term growth.
- Goal 2 — Food security is impossible without food safety. To end hunger, all people must have year-round access to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food.
- Goal 3 — Food safety directly related to people’s health and dietary choices. Foodborne illnesses can be avoided.
- Goal 12 — Countries advance toward more sustainable trends of food production and consumption when they develop their regulatory, scientific, and technological capabilities so as to make sure that food is safe and of the desired quality across the food chain.
- Goal 17 — To maintain food safety in a globalised world with annual food exports exceeding USD 1.6 trillion as well as complex food systems, worldwide cooperation across sectors is required. Governments, food businesses, producers, and consumers all share responsibilities for food safety.
Given the Covid-19 issue, there has not been a greater pressing need to secure health care. Strengthening immunity, preventing the spread of foodborne illnesses, and instilling healthy, hygienic behaviours in agricultural areas, markets, and everywhere else where food is handled has never been more important. The goal of World Food Safety has always been to reduce illness risks caused by food around the world. World Food Safety Day is important for assuring and teaching people regarding food production, how to keep food safe at each and every stage of the food chain, as well as other topics such as food processing, storage, as well as production.
United Nations’ statistical data suggests that about 600 million individuals are affected by foodborne infections each year, with children (under the age of 5) and the poorest parts of society being more vulnerable to illness as a result of unsanitary food consumption. Food safety comprises a holistic approach to food security, beginning with harvesting, processing, storing, distributing, and ending with consumption.
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