W.H.O. Marks World Food Safety Day?!
That’s not even a question! World Health Organization (WHO) along with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, jointly facilitate the observance of this day on 7th June every year, beginning in the year 2018! Food safety is EVERYONE’s responsibility. Now what exactly is Food Safety?
Every year WHO has a theme for this day and this year, it reads “Safe Food Now, For A Healthy Tomorrow”. It emphasizes the importance of consuming safe food and stresses on how it can reap both immediate and long-term benefits. One fine morning the world woke up to the COVID-19 being declared as a pandemic, and what were the discussions around its origin? Rumour has it, a ‘wet market in China caused the world to be so hugely disturbed by the virus. The current situation has shed light to the significance safe food needs to be given.
Annually, approximately 600 million of us suffer from illnesses due to food-borne diseases which makes it very important to amplify the message of food safety for all, and by all. Food consumption is the most basic need of a living being. Everyday, everyone, is consuming so much food that is grown somewhere else, prepared somewhere else, stored somewhere else, and consumed in a totally different place. Thus, the food chain needs to be monitored at every step of the way, right from production, harvest, storage, to distribution, preparation, and ultimately consumption. To ensure hygiene, spreading awareness is an integral part.
Food that is unsafe impacts the entire economy on various levels. It is not just a threat to individuals but entire economies especially those in rural communities, certain marginalized groups, etc. Globally, children are the worse affected as those under 5 years of age carry about 40% of the burden from food borne diseases.
Here are a few things every individual can do to do their part:
- Thoroughly wash all fruits and vegetables.
- Keep your hands clean by thoroughly washing them.
- Properly cook the food we prepare.
- Maintain hygiene while storing the raw and cooked food and keep a clean kitchen.
- Use clean water for cooking.
- Eat at places that promise good quality food and maintain hygiene standards.
- Encourage others around to follow the same.
Let’s take a moment to remember these and celebrate the occasion of World Food Safety Day by educating people with the benefits of Food Safety. If you love someone, always be conscious of what you are serving to them! Let’s pledge to take baby steps to help ourselves, our families, friends, communities, nations, and the entire world.