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Improving food safety in Bangladesh

Consumer Awareness

The Project has developed a range of initiatives and Information, Education and Communications (IEC) materials to enhance awareness of food hygiene and safety among targeted groups – household food preparers, school children, street food vendors and advocacy groups – with a strong recognition of gender sensitivity. Through the Bangladesh Food Safety Network, comprised of five founding NGOs, advocacy activities have been organized in every division of Bangladesh and have involved among others opinion makers, community and religious leaders, politicians, civil servants and journalists. The BFSN has played a critical role in the delivery of consumer education to many districts of the country, where they work. Millions of women and school children have been reached with messages about food safety in a variety of ways. Thousands of copies of food safety communication materials ranging from leaflets, booklet, cartoons, posters, calendars, flip chart, festoon, banners, fact sheets and newsletters have been distributed through the Directorate General of Health Services and the Directorate General of Family Planning. Three public service messages on household food safety are being broadcast on the national channel, Bangladesh Television.

The Project, learning from its successes, is currently expanding IEC both in terms of reach to consumers and richness of information. Feedback mechanisms on food safety from consumers’ representatives to food control authorities are being developed. The Project is continuing to work with media to enable accurate and consistent reporting on food safety issues.