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Magazines Archives - 2009 May

India works to flush out the enemy within
Story 8 - Focus

In India, the facts speak for themselves: 10.3 million people die annually, with 780,000 of these deaths related to water, sanitation and hygiene, according to Safer Water, Better Health, published by the WHO (World Health Organization) in 2008; diarrhoeal diseases cause 402,000 deaths per year, malnutrition accounts for 217,000 deaths while intestinal nematode infection and water-borne diseases claim 19,000 lives yearly.

The growth of the consumer class has prompted the government to impose more stringent food-safety and publichealth measures wherever food manufacturing, storing and packaging take place. It recently declared that “unsafe food is equivalent to an enemy within”.

The country’s health-related spending is US$100 per person, amounting to a national total of US$115 billion, or 5% of GDP. In light of the very large number of illnesses due to food-safety problems, the Ministry of Food Processing Industries says that “it becomes imperative that measures be taken to minimise this”, for which improvement in food safety and quality is essential.”

For this and other reasons, the ministry declares 2008-09 “The Food Safety and Quality Year”.

New initiatives it has undertaken in tandem with the ministries of health, commerce and agriculture are based on strategic interventions, namely establishing Mega Food Parks that can focus on quality-control and safety issues; creating integrated cold-chain infrastructure at various levels, including farm-level primary-processing-centrecum- cold-chain; building a network of collection/aggregation centres, and strategic distribution centres; pushing capacity-building by setting up the National Institute of Food Technology Entrepreneurship & Management; and upgrading quality-control laboratories.

And the Indian government is not alone in the initiative. To ensure safety and maintain integrity, from farm to plate, food retailers are also establishing an integrated infrastructure-andservices package that connects and maintains the flow of food from source (farmers/food growers, farm service centres, market yards, processors and importers) to the customer (food-service outlets, food-processing units, food retailers and food exporters), with the aim of eliminating or preventing identified hazards or reducing them to acceptable levels.


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2009 May Stories:

Strategic planning in this crisis - Part 1: How has the paradigm shifted for Asian retailers?

HKTDC Food Expo 2009 to host first Hong Kong International Tea Fair

Cards & Payments Asia 2009: Shifting consumer attitudes impacting market direction

How Thailand instils

High stakes ensure integrity in Singapore

Cleanliness, safety the be-all & end-all in the Philippines

More needs to be done in Malaysia

India works to flush out the enemy within

One bright spot in downturn: Cosmetics non-negotiable

Two malls set to open in Singapore

GLP continues investment in China

Melamine scare, global recession put a dent on world dairy market

Laura Ashley Japan installs software to improve store efficiency, customer service

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