Food safety on the agenda at FARA meeting on agriculture in Africa

AgHealth

In many countries of sub-Saharan Africa, informal markets play an important role in supplying most of the meat, milk, eggs and fish that poor people depend on for their nourishment.

Informal markets are those where traditional processing and products predominate and where traders are often unlicensed and do not pay tax.

Examples include street food markets, milk hawking systems, wet markets for pork, backyard poultry systems and artisanal production of cheese and other fermented milk products.

Despite the important role of Africa’s informal food markets in providing nutrition, employment and income to millions of people, these markets are often not subject to effective health and safety regulation.

Several approaches to food safety in informal markets have focused on food-borne hazards, with a tendency to adopt stringent international food quality standards with little regard for local contexts.

On the other hand, risk-based approaches to food safety do not just consider the…

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