Food hygiene, chemical checks to be enhanced

To minimise food poisoning, the Viet Nam Food Administration (VFA) plans to set up a system to quickly check food for harmful bacteria and too much preservatives and other chemicals.

Under the system, samples of food in danger of being contaminated would be regularly tested at wholesale markets, said VFA Director Nguyen Cong Khan.

For example, food of unknown origin would be checked for chemical preservatives, he said.

Khan said the system would be established by the Ministry of Health and with support of the Korean International Development Agency.

The VFA plans to publish warnings related to food on its web site (vfa.gov.vn) and through the mass media.

One Ha Noi housewife, Le Thi Mai, praised the scheme and hoped it would reach mothers and housewives in all corners of the country.

VFA statistics show that Viet Nam now has nearly nine million food producers and traders, making control difficult. From 2004 to 2009, more than 1,000 outbreaks of food poisoning were responsible for the deaths of 298 people out of the 26,500 people affected. Last year, 42 people died from 175 food poisoning incidents involving 5,664 people.

Source: Vietfish International

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