World Food Safety Day: Significance, theme, and call to action
Every year 4,20,000 people die eating contaminated food across the world, out of which 1,25,000 are children under the age of five. Safe food, nutrition, and food security are linked together. Unsafe food containing harmful microbes or chemical substances causes over 200 diseases. World Food Safety Day is observed on June 7 every year, to prevent and manage foodborne diseases, that threaten our health.
World Food Safety Day was declared by the United Nations General Assembly on December 20, 2018, to celebrate the benefits of safe food, and draw global attention to the consequences of contaminated food and water. This day is observed to make efforts to ensure that the food consumed is safe. We must focus on safety to reduce the burden of consequences of food-borne diseases.
The theme for World Food Safety Day 2022 is "Safer food, better health." The theme was announced by the World Health Organization (WHO) which explains that safer food is the key to better health. Policymakers must design public procurement of food so that consumers can access safe and healthy foods. Food businesses must comply with international food standards.
The UN says, around 600 million cases of food-borne sicknesses are reported yearly. Diseases arising from unhygienic food affect the most vulnerable people in our society, especially children and victims of conflicts. Illnesses are caused by viruses, bacteria, and parasites present in food and water. It is important to ensure that food stays safe and hygienic from harvesting to distribution.
We hear about food poisoning deaths from school-midday meals and other places pretty frequently and feel saddened. Here's what we can do to prevent history from repeating itself. Consumers should store food items in clean spaces, keep raw and cooked food separately, cook ingredients thoroughly, keep food at safe temperatures and use clean water. We must stay informed and promote food safety.