Experts discuss strategies to improve food safety in traditional markets in Asia Pacific
On 1–2 September 2021, the World Health Organization regional office for Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific hosted a bi-regional advocacy meeting on risk mitigation in traditional food markets in the Asia Pacific region.
Traditional food markets are an important source of affordable, fresh food and contribute to the nutrition, health and livelihoods of many people. However, there are often concerns about the safety of food sold in these markets on account of inadequate facilities and weak food safety regulation.
The objectives of the meeting were to:
- support national authorities to advocate for improved traditional food markets;
- discuss strategies to mitigate the risks of unsafe food and spillover of pathogens;
- present a manual to support risk assessment and mitigation in traditional food markets; and
- share lessons from member states on improving traditional food markets.
Hung Nguyen-Viet, co-leader of the Animal and Human Health program at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), presented an overview of traditional food markets in Asia Pacific, with reference to research projects by ILRI and partners on improving food safety and reducing risks in informal markets in Cambodia and Vietnam.
Hung Nguyen-Viet, Lindahl, J., Unger, F. and Grace, D. 2021. Overview of traditional food markets in Asia Pacific. Presentation at a bi-regional advocacy meeting on risk mitigation in traditional food markets in the Asia Pacific region, 1–2 September 2021. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.
Photo credit: Makara market in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (ILRI/Hardisman Dasman)