Conference Room Document 27
English only

FAO/WHO Regional Conference on Food Safety for Asia and the Pacific

Myanmar Country report

FDA Myanmar, Department of Health

Dr. Yi Yi Htwe
Deputy Director


• The Government of Myanmar recognizes health as a fundamental right for all its citizens and at large for all human beings.

• Myanmar has established a National Health Committee (NHC) and has laid down the National Health Policy.

• Under the guidance of National Health Committee and the objectives of National Health Authority, a National Health Plan were drawn and implemented using the Primary Health Care approach.

• Twelve broad programmes have been implemented in NHP and Food and Drug Administration is one of the programs among them.

• The Department of Health is responsible not only for overall health care of the populace and but also for food and drug safety and control.

Food Control in Myanmar

• Food and Drug Control activities was started since 1927, a year before the first Food and Drug Act (1928)

• Till 1960, food control work had been fragmented and exercised by various departments.

• After which, Department of Health took responsibility for overall food safety in the country.

• In 1972, Public Health Law was promulgated and successive attempts had been made to strengthen the food control work.

• Food Quality Control Laboratory (FQCL) was established as a division under National Health Laboratory of the Department of Health.

• But achievements on food control work has been limited to certain extent for various reasons.

• In early 1990, as the authorities realized the need to further strengthening the food & drug control work, attempts had been made to improve it.

• National Drug Law was promulgated in 1992.

• As food and drug safety is concerned with a number of sectors including agriculture, fisheries, industry, trade & environment, in recognition of the need for integration,

• formation of Food & Drug Board of Authority was formed out in accordance with the provision of National Drug Law and restructuring of Food and Drug Supervisory Committees were done.

• At the same time, in accordance with the provision of National Drug Law, Food & Drug Division has been upgraded to be a Department under a Director as Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since 1995.

• Food &Drug Administration has two divisions; Food Division and Drug Division. Each division has Enforcement & Laboratory units.

• Food enforcement unit comprises of regulatory affairs, inspection, training and advisory services.

• Food laboratory unit has food and water microbiological and chemical laboratories.

• National Food Law has been promulgated in 1997 in line with WHO Model Food Law.

• Notifications regarding with National Food Law are under process.

• For the interim measures, FDA, Department of Health refers Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) as working materials.

• Myanmar is the long time member of WHO, FAO, CAC and WTO.

• Myanmar participates in ASEAN Trade Protocol and regional Sanitary & Phytosanitory Agreement (SPS) and Technical Barrier to Trade Agreement (TBT). FDA is contact point for CAC.

• Government enforces to practice Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) mandatory in food processing industries.

• Food and Drug Administration encourages all sectors of food manufacturers to implement Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) concept and Risk Analysis Approach to all food control officers.

• The National Health Plan (1996-2001) also identified objective relating to the expansion of FDA in Mandalay (second largest city in Myanmar) and has started functioning since the year 2000.

• To ensure efficient and uniform control throughout Myanmar, various levels of Food and Drug Supervisory Committee (FDSC) has been formed in later part of 1992.

• Food Advisory Committee, Food Technical Affairs Sub-committee and Food Orders and Directives Sub-committee have been formed since 2002.

A. Myanmar Food and Drug Board of Authority (MFDBA)

• The Myanmar Food and Drug Board of Authority (MFDBA) is chaired by Minister for Health and

• its members comprises from related departments as well as professionals from relevant fields of specialties.

• The authority is vested power by the law to lay down policy, guidance on production, distribution, importation, exportation, quality assurance, standard setting, classifying controlled food, food additives and substandard foods, labelling and advertisement

• Is also empowered to take action according to the Food Law on those who do not comply with the regulations

B. Food and Drug Supervisory Committees

• The Food and Drug Supervisory Committees are formed as Central, State and Division, District and Township Food and Drug Supervisory Committees respectively.

• At the central level, the committee members are Director General of Health as a chairman,

• Director of FDA as a secretary and representatives from City Development Committee, Myanmar Police Force, Department of General Administration, Department of Development Affairs and Department of Livestock are members of it.

C. City Development Committees (CDCs) and Other Related Agencies

• City Development Committees are concerned with street food, food service establishments as food safety. CDCs have licensing authority within their jurisdiction.

• Under the Industrial Law, the Directorate of Industrial Coordination & Inspection of Ministry of Industry is the licensing authority for industrial establishment; it has to license all food manufacturing establishments.

Other agencies and departments like

• Myanmar Science & Technology Research Department

• Department of Fisheries,

• Post Harvest Technology Application Center of Myanmar Agriculture Produce Trading,

• Myanmar Agricultural Service

also play a part in laboratory analysis that are involved in food safety program.


• The FDA though being established a few years in accordance with the Law is still a small sized regulatory agency.

• It is quite a challenging for it to accomplish all possible control measures that are involved in comprehensive food safety control.

• The present FDA requires more international training on enforcement and laboratory analysis.

• Moreover, the existing laboratory facilities need to be upgraded so that FDA will enable to accomplish all works pertaining to comprehensive food safety control in harmony with international practices.


• Myanmar, whose economy has recently changed into market orientated one, has a challenging task in dealing with Food Safety measures as exports and imports of food commodities are now having a booming business.

• Food control activities have been existed since prewar times, systematic approaches has been applied very recently.

• Food and Drug Administration has been established since 1995 and National Food Law has been promulgated since 1997. Notifications are under process.

• Upper Myanmar Division of FDA has established since 2000.

• Limited functional capability is the main constraint.

• The statistical data of the Central Epidemiological Unit (CEU) calls for an attention to the health authority concerning with the food safety especially for sanitary conditions.

• Hence, training and survey programmes were instituted regarding food safety and sanitation and many more still to be conducted.

• FDA practices Myanmar food industries to comply HACCP based Food Hygienic Practice on food inspection that makes the food industry should apply this guideline.

• FDA utilizes Codex Alimentarius Commission materials as working materials as interim measure before developing national standards, practices and guidelines.

• The food control authority realized that Risk Analysis Approach is of our concern and pre and post market surveillance are regularly conducted to assess quality and safety of food for public.

Thank You