Food safety and quality

Food fraud – its impact on consumer trust and possible health consequences


While there is no internationally agreed definition, the term “food fraud” commonly describes a situation in which the consumer is deceived about the amount, quality and/or identity of the food they consume. Food fraud is economically motivated as an inferior product is fraudulently sold as if it were in fact superior. Food fraud is not designed to result in adverse health outcomes. However, some studies have indicated that in situations of marginal food security, food fraud may lead to under-nutrition.

Food fraud is an indicator that there is a blind spot in the oversight of food supply chains. Food fraud also negatively impacts consumer trust in food industries and regulatory authorities. In addition, where food fraud has been detected, the necessary corrective actions are often extremely costly for the vendor as food fraud routinely triggers recalls of all affected food products.

Food fraud can occur in all parts of the world and is not always reported. The underreporting is potentially rather large as only some high-income countries make relevant and reliable data about food fraud available.

On 16 November 2023, FAO is organizing a livestreamed webinar on the topic from its regional office for Latin American and the Caribbean based in Santiago, Chile. It is with the objective for the countries in the region to gain a good understanding of food fraud and its negative impact on consumer trust and food safety. FAO invites anyone – from government officials from various relevant sectors, as well as stakeholders from the region – to the webinar "Implications of Food Fraud and its Health Implications" to raise awareness and discuss relevant management options in national contexts. The event will be moderated by Ms Ana Posas, Agricultural Officer of FAO in the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean with three panelist including Dr Masami Takeuchi, Food Safety Officer of FAO, Ms Carmen Bullon, Legal Officer of FAO and Dr Esther Carrido Gamarro, Fishery Officer of FAO.

To watch the live broadcast on YouTube, follow the link: The event will start at 11.30 (local time in Chile) and will end at 13.00. Registration is not required.

Webinar date and time:

16 November 2023
11.30-13.00 CLST (Chile Summer Time)

For more information:

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