Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Development a Comprehensive Food Safety System in Serbia- A Narrative Review Article

Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Development a Comprehensive Food Safety System in Serbia- A Narrative Review Article

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Food is one of the most important factors deter- mining the rise of human civilization. Long ago psychologist Abraham Maslow introduced his concept of a hierarchy of needs. He claims that it is only after a community's basic needs are met that people can move on to developing safety and security (1). There are implications of recent glob- al financial crises on financial and economic stabil- ity, and hence on food security because the global food system is very vulnerable. World Economic Forum Report 2013 stated: "Global food and nu- trition security is a major global concern as the world prepares to feed a growing population on a dwindling resource base, in an era of increased volatility and uncertainty." Thus, measures to "improve food security have never been more ur- gently needed" (2).

The main task for every government starts to be how to provide sustainable and healthy food sup- ply, and protect its population against foodborne diseases. Marc Danzon stated that "one of the most important steps is the coordination of pol- icy-making to ensure that the food policies of all sectors give the proper priority to public health" (3). Many organizations are involved in the area of providing food security since the World Food Conference in 1974 defined food security in terms of food supply-assuring availability and price sta- bility of basic foodstuffs at the international and national level (4). Food safety and food security are two highly interrelated subjects with similar and common fields of activities in terms and ref- erences. The boundaries between theory and prac- tice may sometimes be blurred, and there are also various definitions of terms-this all results in quite versatile terminology which may also sometimes be confusing. Food safety is concerned with all aspects, whether immediate or long-term, that may make food unsafe for the consumer. There- fore, safe foods or foodstuffs contain nothing that is hazardous or injurious (5). In many countries there exists some kind of "expert bodies" to avoid duplicating of efforts and decreasing unnecessary costs in the field of food security.

Therefore, since the safe food is a precondition for the protection and promotion of health, many organizations were and are involved in the efforts to mitigate the effects of foodborne illnesses on public health. The most influential is WHO. WHO works closely with the Food and Agricul- ture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), WHO for Animal Health (OIE), and other inter- national organizations to address food safety is- sues along the entire food chain. The Department of Food Safety and Zoonoses (FOS) provides leadership in its efforts to lower the burden of diseases from food and animals across the globe (6). In 2004, WHO launched the International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN) as an early warning, communication and prevention system which enables rapid access to information during the food safety emergencies (7).

In the European Region there are a lot of docu- ments that outline the addressed policies about food supplies, food safety and nutrition, and also about mobilization resources for the activities on poverty and health (8, 9). Across the ocean, in the USA the food safety legislation has recently been changed and that action initiated numerous dis- cussions (10-12). In the United States of America (USA) there are a great number of federal, state, and local agencies which share responsibilities for regulating the safety of the food supply. The combined efforts of the food industry and gov- ernment regulatory agencies are often credited with making the US food supply among the safest in the world, but despite all efforts the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that each year an estimated one in six Americans - a total of 48 million people - become sick from food borne illnesses through contaminated food (13). The USA 111th Congress passed comprehen- sive food safety legislation on December 2010, authorizing the additional appropriations and staff for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) future food safety activities pathogens (14). …

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