Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — HCM City authorities are encouraging consumers to buy food products with clearly labelled sources of origin to ensure food quality.
Experts discussed food quality measures for the 2018-2019 period at a meeting organised by the city’s Food Safety Management Board on Wednesday.
The city’s Food Safety Management Board, Department of Industry and Trade and chains of supermarkets and convenience stores have been urged to coordinate management.
Phạm Khánh Phong Lan, head of the city’s Food Safety Management Board, said the coordination would monitor the quality of food products, improve management of quality control, and reduce the number of unsafe food products.
"Consumers like to buy food in traditional markets because it may cheaper than others" but some products have no clear origin, she said. "Upgrading food quality in traditional markets and enhancing modern distribution systems is essential."
Enterprises must comply with rules of food safety, work with the board to conduct quality control activities, and provide samples of products. They must contact the board about tracing risks of unsafe products.
Test results, warnings and other information should be publicised on websites to alert consumers, food producers and traders.
If an enterprise does not disclose information about test results, the board will publish the enterprise’s names on its website.
The city’s Food Safety Management Board has sent information to 29 supermarkets and convenience stores in the city about participation in food safety supervision.
Of these, 12 are participating and nine have sent 38,833 test samples. Of the figure, two have testing rooms, and four own rapid-test equipment.
Safe food chains
HCM City produces only 20-30 per cent of food for local consumption, while the remaining is shipped from neighboring provinces. Because of this, safety management is facing challenges.
Developing safe-food distribution chains would help reduce the amount of unsafe food throughout the chain of production, business, management and consumer processing.
It would also contribute to the sustainable development of the country’s agricultural products.
Participating in chains helps owners trace the origin of products, promote the company’s brand name, and identify their products.
It also helps management agencies monitor quality control and easily trace causes of food poisoning.
HCM City is one of the leading localities in the country in the development of safe food chains for vegetables, meat and seafood. The chains include many businesses, producers and providers. — VNS