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World Food Safety Day given a high profile in Tanzania


In Tanzania, representatives of government, the World Health Organization (WHO) and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) were all active across mainstream and social media on 7 June to promote World Food Safety Day.

In a televised press conference, Rose Shija Muhangwa, on behalf of the WHO representative to Tanzania and Bwana Gervas Kaisi, Acting Director of Quality Control at the Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) held a joint press conference in which they each highlighted the collective responsibility of keeping food safe. “Citizens have a responsibility to ensure that the food they buy is safe before eating or preparing it. It is important for consumers to inspect food to ensure that it is not spoiled or about to expire,” said Gervas Kaisi, reiterating that diseases caused by unsafe food can be prevented if everyone fulfills their role in the food chain. This message was reinforced at the press conference by TBS Senior Food Safety Officer, Immaculata Justin and TBS Senior Food Security Officer, Kaiza Kilango.

The issue of food labelling was raised by Gervas Kaisi, and also in parliament, by Neema Lugangira, Member of Parliament representing NGOs on the Tanzanian Mainland. In a tweet on 7 June, she reported her request to the Minister of Industry and Trade, Professor Kitila Mkumbo, to introduce food labelling regulations in Tanzania. “And Hon. Minister agreed” she tweeted.

Muhangwa, WHO focal person for essential medicines including food safety in Tanzania, quoted World Bank statistics ... on the cost of unsafe food saying it costs low- and middle-income countries USD 95 billion annually. In a nod to this year’s theme, “safe food now for a healthy tomorrow,” she also said: "Access to safe and healthy food can be enhanced in the future by embracing digital innovation, developing scientific solutions and respecting traditional knowledge that has endured and brought productivity at various times."


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