Safe food contributes not only to healthy people, but to healthy environments and economies. The benefits of safe food include improved nutrition, increased school attendance and better earning potential. On 7 June 2021, the United Nations marked the third global World Food Safety Day, led by two of its specialized agencies, World Health Organization (WHO) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), together with the Codex Alimentarius Secretariat.
Food safety is a shared responsibility, and everyone has a role to play including governments, industry, producers, business operators and consumers. This is reflected in the slogan of the day: ‘Food safety is everyone’s business’.
WHO and FAO are supporting Member States in efforts to provide enough safe food for all and to enable the population’s trust in the safety of the food to protect their health. Events such as World Food Safety Day help by bringing focus to the food safety community and the critical role they play.
On Monday, 7 June, WHO and FAO held a virtual celebration including video messages from WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and FAO Director-General QU Dongyu.
The event included an interactive session in which the Chief Scientists of WHO and FAO discuss the ways science is helping to innovate and keep our food safe along the food supply chain. Soumya Swaminathan (WHO) and Ismahane Elouafi (FAO) delved into this year’s theme for World Food Safety Day, which is ‘Safe food now for a healthy tomorrow’. The conversation was focused on how food safety is vital for people, plants, planet, economies – and our future.
We all have a role to play in keeping food safe. Whether you produce, process, sell, prepare or share food with friends or family, you can take concrete actions to keep food safe. Safe food contributes to a healthy life, a healthy planet and a healthy future.