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High-Level Roundtable on food safety and aflatoxins in Africa

On 12 April 2016, the Global Panel and the African Union’s Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa (PACA) brought together decision-makers from across Africa to discuss issues around food safety, with particular focus on aflatoxins. The Global Panel launched its latest policy brief ‘Assuring Safe Food Systems: Policy Options for a Healthier Food Supply’ at the roundtable.

The Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition and the AU’s Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa (PACA) held a High-Level Roundtable in Accra, Ghana, on 12 April 2016.

The Global Panel launched its latest policy brief "Assuring Safe Food Systems: Policy Options for a Healthier Food Supply". The roundtable and launch took place to coincide with the 12th Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Program Partnership Platform.

The Global Panel and PACA brought together decision-makers from across Africa to:

  • Launch the Global Panel’s brief on food safety and introduce its key messages to African leaders.
  • Inform and inspire high-level champions to tackle aflatoxins in African countries based on PACA’s research and knowledge about what works best.
  • Stimulate a conversation about global food safety issues, in particular aflatoxins in the African context.

Keynote speakers

  • H.E. John Kufuor, Former President of the Republic of Ghana and Co-Chair of the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition
  • H.E. Mrs. Rhoda Peace Tumusiime, Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission and Member of the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition
  • Prof. Sandy Thomas, Director, Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition
  • Dr. Janet Edeme, Acting Director, Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission

Food safety and aflatoxins: time to take action

The roundtable addressed broader food safety challenges in Africa which threaten the achievement of the Malabo Declaration. The discussion then focus on aflatoxins, a chronic food safety risk affecting Africa’s staple crops, significantly undermining health and nutrition, and limiting agricultural growth and trade as a result of affected crops and livestock. Together, decision makers and development partners from across Africa discussed the challenges ahead, and identified the most promising pathways to address food safety issues, in particular aflatoxins.

What are aflatoxins?

Food safety policy brief

During the roundtable, the Global Panel launched the policy brief "Assuring Safe Food Systems: Policy Options for a Healthier Food Supply" which reviews food safety issues that are critical to poor and vulnerable populations in low- and middle-income countries. Assuring the safety of global food systems will require coordinated actions across policy, regulations, surveillance, and control measures to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. Every government has to pay close attention to these issues and invest in the appropriate steps, from production through to consumption.

Event highlights