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Story Highlights

  • National Food Safety Week 2015 will be observed from November 15-21, and several activities will be held under the theme: ‘Safe Foods from Production to Consumption: the Gateway to Health and Wealth’.
  • During the week the various activities will focus on the five key areas of food safety.
  • A church service will be held on November 15 at the Mennonite Christian Church, White Hall Avenue, to kick off the week’s activities.

National Food Safety Week 2015 will be observed from November 15-21, and several activities will be held under the theme: ‘Safe Foods from Production to Consumption: the Gateway to Health and Wealth’.

Addressing a JIS ‘Think Tank’, on November 11, Acting Deputy Food Storage Officer in the Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Division, Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Tamara Morrison, explained that during the week the various activities will focus on the five key areas of food safety:  keep clean, wash hand and all food contact surfaces; separate raw from cook to avoid cross contamination; cook thoroughly; keep food at safe temperature; and use safe water and safe raw materials.

A church service will be held on November 15 at the Mennonite Christian Church, White Hall Avenue, to kick off the week’s activities.

Meanwhile, on Monday, November 16, the Food Safety Policy will be launched at the Terra Nova Hotel at 7:00 a.m.

The activities will be coordinated by the National Agricultural Health and Food Safety Coordinating Committee (NAHFSCC), which is made up of representatives from entities and agencies within the Ministry, the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and the Ministry of Health.

On November 17, the NAHFSCC will hand over posters depicting the five key areas of food safety, a hand-washing station and a mural to Angels Primary School in St. Catherine during their morning devotion.

Later in the day, they will conduct training and Food Handling Permit Certification for food handlers at the Papine Market.

On Wednesday, November 18, the Bureau of Standards Jamaica will host a food safety symposium starting at 8:30 a.m. The public is invited.

A farmer’s training and certification programme, targeting farmers and cottage industry personnel, will be held on Thursday, November 19.

According to Miss Morrison, participants in this training programme will be trained in areas such as good agricultural practices; good manufacturing practices; hazard analysis critical control point; traceability and documentation, packaging and labelling and international regulations.

On Friday, November 20, the Food Safety message will be taken to selected schools across the island. The week’s activities will culminate with a church service at the Sydenham Seventh-day Adventist Church in Spanish Town.

The NAHFSCC was formed to establish and maintain the national integrated farm-to-table agricultural health and food safety system. It also ensures that the protection of public health is done in a consistent manner within the World Trade Organization (WTO) and other international standards.