JAKARTA, 15 November 2016 –  Foodborne diseases can hamper socio-economic development by draining the health care systems and harming national economies, tourism and trade. To enhance food safety in the region, ASEAN organised the 23rd Meeting of ASEAN Consultative Committee on Standards and Quality Prepared Foodstuff Product Working Group at the ASEAN Secretariat on 10 – 11 November.

During the two-day meeting, the working group finalised the ASEAN principles and criteria to establish the maximum level for contaminants and toxins in food and feed which will be the basis in developing the same document on food contaminants.

They also initiated the development of ASEAN Common Food Control Requirements on Food Contact Materials and affirmed that it would continue to monitor the activities of ASEAN Food Reference Laboratories.

Further, the working group finalised the draft of the mutual recognition arrangement on Inspection and Certification System for Food Hygiene which is targeted to be endorsed in 2017.