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Food safety – proof is in the pudding and packaging

Srey Kumneth / Khmer Times Share:
Three professional speakers and a venerable monk give the opportunity to audiences to reach their answer, last week on 23-Novemeber, at CJCC. YT/Srey Kumneth

A HEALTH seminar on “Food Safety and Protection” gave the opportunity to audiences to gain more understanding on food safety and reducing the risk of food poisoning, as well timely advice from a professional speaker and a venerable monk.

Organised by Lotus Radio together with Cambodia-Japan Association for Business and Investment (CJBI), the event featured a venerable monk to provide advice on the ethics of business, reminding manufacturers that they should put people’s health before profit.

“Manufacturers of food such as noodle, snack, soft drink, soy source and juice or whatever else have technical expertise but they may lack virtues if they think only about profitability, not people’s health,” said Mr Ieng Sotheara, founder of the cooperative at CJBI.

Speaking at Cambodia-Japan Cooperation Center last week, Mr Sotheara said that: “When manufacturers make good profits they will feast but if they make a bad product that sickens people, this ‘karma’ will hit them back one day.”

Aside from wayward manufacturers, the consumer also plays an important role because it is in their own hands to choose exactly what they want to eat. Buyers should think about quality and food safety when they go to the market and shopping.

“It’s not just the taste in the eating, but buyers should know about the proteins in the food or fruit before they buy. Secondly, buyers should check the wrapping and packaging to see it is not broken or torn as microbes can breed in the content (of meat productsetc),” Mr Sotheara added.

One participant, Try Songleng, a 22-year-old Year 4 student of Faculty of Agro-Industry at Royal University of Agriculture, however advocated that people should reduce eating outside with hawker fare and instead buy vegetable and meat to cook at home.

“This seminar is presented to both buyer and sellers, how to think of safety and healthy food first. Construction workers and garment factory workers should reduce eating outside and but cook instead. I can confess that streetfood is so yummy (he also eat) but it can really impact on our health,” said Mr Songleng.

He also pointed out that people should be wary of imports like canned food which may be expired, or of poor packaging, quality, and containing too much chemical.

Mr Songleng’s message is: “People should encourage our own manufactured products (cottage industry) and made-in-Cambodia goods (like organic vegetables and food). Organic vegetable and meat may be a bit more expensive but it is good for health.”

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