Building capacity for institutionalizing food safety tracking in African Union member states

This project aims to build the capacity of African Union member states to generate evidence to track progress towards improved food safety systems. Improved food safety will reduce the economic and health burden of foodborne illnesses and improve trade and incomes.

This project responds to the need to prioritize investment in food safety in Africa where the burden posed by food safety challenges is the greatest and the urgency for action the highest. The project will develop a set of composite indicators to capture the multi-sectoral nature and impacts of food safety. These indicators will be packaged in the Africa Food Safety Index and incorporated into the Malabo Biennial Review mechanism.

The Africa Food Safety Index will provide evidence to governments to assist them prioritize investments in food safety, reduce the burden of foodborne illnesses and enhance safe trade of food. The project will also build the capacity of policymakers in African Union member states to embed food safety in national policies and strategies.



  • Develop a pilot-tested, gender-responsive, climate-sensitive Africa Food Safety Index for tracking through the African Union Malabo Biennial Review mechanism and communication channels for reporting to food safety authorities and the private sector.
  • Develop a digital, bi-directional reporting system and digital platform to compile data and analyse trends.
  • Sensitize policymakers on food safety challenges and the use of evidence in decision-making.
  • Establish a network of food safety experts to provide technical support to countries on collection and submission of food safety data.
  • Build capacity of focal experts in data collection, analysis and reporting for sustained and predictable food safety tracking in Africa.


Expected outcomes

  • Prioritization of food safety in African Union member states, with at least 25 member states developing food safety master plans that incorporate increased investment in food safety.
  • At least 20 countries submit a report on the Africa Food Safety Index to the second Biennial Review on Malabo Commitments by October 2019.
  • At least 10 countries report better understanding of foodborne illnesses and better ability to manage them, including safety of food exports.
  • Strengthened capacity of government institutions in the 55 African Union member states to establish food safety tracking systems.