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An inspiring overview of World Food Safety Day 2020


At today’s opening of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced the release of a new report about World Food Safety Day 2020. “Under the theme ‘Food safety, everyone’s business’, the WHO-led event focused on building and maintaining safe food in marketplaces,” he said, referring to the UN Day while holding up a copy of the report for participants to see.

The report, World Food Safety Day 2020 - Overview of an inspiring virtual celebration, offers a glimpse of the more than 100 different activities, events and campaigns that were held in more than 60 countries.  As countries went into lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the observances to mark 7 June took place online and many went beyond the designated date.

Additionally, the 24-page publication documents the five calls to action, which shaped not only the global campaign materials but in some instance gave structure to the events with speakers addressing how to promote food safety from different sectors and perspectives.

Audiences worldwide were told that governments must ‘ensure it’s safe’, agriculture and food producers need to ‘grow it safe’, food business operators have to ‘keep it safe’, consumers must ‘eat it safe, and everyone should ‘team up for safety’ as food safety is a shared responsibility.

In congratulating the Codex community for jumping into the digital realm, FAO Director-General Dr QU Dongyu invited greater exploration of innovation and digital technology to setting standards and, by extension, promoting food safety. “The second World Food Safety Day was a triumph for digitalization bringing worlds and people together,” he said.

In their letter to Members, which is included in the report, both Directors-General paid tribute to the ‘food heroes’ who have been working tirelessly in the challenging conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic to keep our food safe.

The report closes on a forward-looking note, anticipating that in June 2021, when the third World Food Safety takes place, the international community will be gearing up for the UN Food Systems Summit, an opportunity to consider the role that food safety can play in food systems at a global, regional, national and local level. The collaboration, creativity and dedication that went into 2020 initiatives is sure to inspire readers for next year.


Download the report in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish