The East African Community (EAC) partner states have agreed on eleven actions that should be implemented to strengthen the food safety regulations in the region.
The EAC high-level regional meeting held at Entebbe in Uganda today has also adopted four policy briefs that provide recommendations on mitigating the impact of current Food Safety issues of interest in the region.
The action points include, increasing investment in food safety and codes, enhancing foodborne disease surveillance and monitoring, promoting food safety research focused on developing new technologies of safety management as well as strengthening the regulatory mechanisms by developing and enforcing robust food safety policies and standards.
Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, the Minister for Health who has been the Guest of honor emphasized the need for harmonization of regulatory mechanisms to ensure safe food for consumers and smooth trade flow in the EAC region.
Daniel Nangalama, the Acting Executive Director of the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS), which is the current coordinators for codex activities in Africa, committed to the continued engagement of members in the EAC region to ensure food safety regulatory enforcement to avoid substandard food trade in the region.
In June 2023, the South Sudan National Bureau of Standards (SSNBS) impounded a number of Ugandan trucks loaded with maize grains, maize flour, and wheat on allegations of failing to pass the test for contamination with aflatoxin.
This forced Ugandan grain dealers under their umbrella body, the Nation Millers Association to suspend food export to South Sudan over the trade crisis at the Nimule border.