Needed Improvements in Food Safety

Needed Improvements in Food Safety

Caribbean exporters urged to strengthen food safety systems

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During a two-day workshop in Port-of-Spain Trinidad, food manufacturers were urged to strengthen food safety standards, as it will assist in achieving a greater level of international market access and trade.

“Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) Plan Development and Implementation” was the title of the sub-regional workshop which was attended by private sector participants from Guyana, Haiti, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago. The HACCP plan is the best means of ensuring food safety as it is internationally accepted.

According to the Course Cordinator, Microbiologist Dr. Melinda Hayman, stated that the purpose of the workshop is that participants would leave with an understanding of how to implement an HACCP plan.

This sub-regional HACCP training is a result of the actions of the 10th EDF SPS Project which wishes to enable CARIFORUM States to capitalise on international trade opportunities. The SPS project funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the Barbados Delegation of the Inter-American Institution for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) seeks to address gaps and defiencies in three major areas 5-Steps-to-Food-Safety– legislation, coordination and capacity building.

Gregg Rawlins, the IICA representative in Trinidad and Tobago said that “the low-level of compliance with the food safety regulations and other SPS standards presents a challenge for CARIFORUM exporters of agri-food products from achieving a greater level of international market access and trade”.

“All countries and subsequent companies involved in the manufacturing, processing and handling of food products should adopt this system to minimise or eliminate food safety hazards in their products”.