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Hong Kong Speaks Sense On Food Safety

by 5m Editor
28 November 2007, at 11:24am

HONG KONG - A common international platform for an electronic health-certificate system enabling food tracing with laser precision should be developed, Secretary for Food & Health Dr York Chow says.

Food for thought: Secretary for Food & Health Dr York Chow addresses the international food safety forum in Beijing.

With it authorities can predict food issues before they occur and food incidents can be resolved within hours rather than days. Hong Kong is heading towards this direction and devising a set of food standards and making the best use of an electronic food-tracing system, he said.

Speaking at the international food safety forum in Beijing today, Dr Chow said a common format and platform for electronic health and food safety certification could greatly minimise economic, political and health damage caused by food-safety incidents.

He said the Government is drawing up a new law to manage food safety, is learning from the best international practice and is more than willing to contribute to the strengthening of international co-operation on the issue.

Dr Chow said the goal is to ensure a comprehensive and up-to-date set of food-safety standards complying with international standards, yet suited to Hong Kong's circumstances.

The Government is planning a central poultry abattoir to avoid a human avian-influenza outbreak. Although the proposal has been hotly debated, he said he is confident the public will support it.

"The community knows an avian influenza outbreak costing lives simply cannot be allowed to happen again, even at the expenses of tradition," he said.

5m Editor