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II Opening session

II Opening session

2. Prof. (Dr.) Indira Chakravarty, the Principal Coordinator of the joint FAD/All India Institute of Hygiene and Public Health (AIIH&PH) project TCP/IND/0155 entitled "Improving Street Foods in Calcutta" welcomed the guests and participants at the inaugural session of the meeting.

3. Mr. Prasanta Chatterjee, Mayor, Calcutta Municipal Corporation (CMC), the Chief Guest, welcomed the participants and outlined the involvement of the Calcutta city authorities in the promotion and control of street foods. Dr. Obaidullah Khan, Assistant Director-General and FAO Regional Representative for Asia, welcomed the participants and thanked the Government of India, the Government of West Bengal and the Calcutta Municipal Corporation for hosting the meeting. He stressed the importance FAO gave to street foods. He congratulated and praised the All India Institute of Hygiene and Public Health (AIIH&PH), Calcutta which was awarded the FAO/Edouard Saouma Award for its outstanding work in carrying out the FAO/AIIH&PH Street Food Project in Calcutta and for improving street food quality and safety in various areas of the city. Dr. A.K. Mukherjee, Director-General of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, in welcoming the participants pointed out the interest created at the national level by the Calcutta experience. He informed the participants about various planned initiatives which would ensure the extension of activities in the informal food sector to other parts of the country. Mr. R.J. Dawson, Chief, Food Quality and Standards Service, FAO, Rome praised the AIIH&PH, Calcutta for its achievement in gaining the Edouard Saouma Award. He informed the participants that FAO had been collaborating with a number of countries around the world to improve the quality and safety of street foods. He also reminded the experts that they had been invited to the meeting in their personal capacity and were not representing their organizations or countries at the meeting. He reiterated the meeting objectives, which were: to consider the progress made to date in improving the quality and safety of street foods at the global level; to analyze different experiences and lessons learned as well as to provide the international community with an updated set of guidelines for renewed or extended action. Mr. P. Rosenegger, FAO Representative, India concluded by giving a vote of thanks to the Indian authorities for hosting the meeting.

4. The meeting elected Prof. (Mrs.) Indira Chakravarty (India) as Chairperson and Mr. Jairo Romero Torres (Colombia) as Vice Chairman. The meeting appointed Prof. F.G. Winarno (Indonesia) as Rapporteur.

5. Following the adoption of the agenda, the Chairperson indicated in her introduction that a major issue to be addressed by the meeting was the possible development of an action plan for further work on street foods at global, regional and national levels. The Chair drew the attention of the experts to the background and reference papers available for the street foods meeting. The list of such documents is appended as Annex 3.

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