Food Safety Challenges in Traditional Pork Value Chains and Policy Engagement in Vietnam and Laos
Fred Unger1, Phuc Pham Duc2, Van Hung Pham3, Vannaphone Putthana4, Sinh Dang-Xuan2, Hanh Tran Thi Tuyet2, Hung Nguyen1, Aurelie Binot5, Narnon Lacksivy4, Delia Grace6
1International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), ILRI Hanoi, Vietnam
Food-borne disease (FBD) is a major public health issue in low income countries of South East Asia including Vietnam and Laos. The contamination of popular foods can occur all along the food value chain. Evidence on the burden of FBD is still limited but the risk is expected to be high due to poor food hygiene practices, missing incentives to change them, risky consumption habits and poor enforcement of existing legislation. We will present two case studies conducted since 2015 for Vietnam and Laos. For Vietnam the research included risk assessments (qualitative and quantitative, QMRA) of food safety hazards along the pork value chain (Salmonella and chemical) targeting Hung Yen and Nghe An province while for Laos the focus was on parasitic FBD (trichinella) in communities of Savannahkhet and Champasak provinces. Nearly half of collected pork market samples (N=217) in Hung Yen and Nghe An (Vietnam) were contaminated with salmonella and a QMRA concluded that 1-2 pork consumers from ten are at risk to suffer from salmonella related FBD while the chemical risk was low. Results for Savannahkhet (Laos) indicate 18% seropositity for trichinella antibodies in pigs (N=417), results for Champasak (N=304) are currently analysed. Both case studies were implemented by interdisciplinary research teams. In both studies focus was given on policy engagement (national and lower). In Vietnam this was facilitated through an established taskforce for food safety risk assessment, an alignment with a Word Bank funded national food safety assessment initiative and the national food safety working group which included various stakeholders and groups. For Laos a unique cross-sectoral ministerial platform has been established consisting of 6 ministries (agriculture, health, trade, defense, communication and tourism) which advised on community based interventions (e.g. awareness campaigns). Steps towards successful policy and multi-ministry engagement will be presented and discussed.
Keywords: Food safety, Laos, pork value chain, Vietnam
Contact Address: Fred Unger, International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), ILRI Hanoi, Van Phuc Diplomatic Compound, ILRI, B1, R 301, Kim Ma Street 298, 00000 Hanoi, Vietnam, e-mail: f.ungercgiar.org