Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

July 2018
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EDITO
Sunday, 15 July 2018

French and UK supermarkets are amongst the first in Europe to lead the example by giving unsold food from supermarkets to non-profit organisations. The French government recently voted to stop supermarkets wasting food, as they will now have to give the food to charities or farms. In the UK, the largest supermarket chain, Tesco will be giving away food it otherwise would dispose of to women's refuge centers and children breakfast clubs. The move will help address the massive amount of food wasted globally each year, while also tackling problem of hunger. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) published the following fact in October 2014: If the amount of food wasted each year -1.3 billion tons- was just cut in half, everyone would be fed.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Roberto Ridolfi, Director for sustainable growth and development at the European commission's DG DevCo – EuropeAid explains the new flagship 'EU biodiversity for life' (B4LIFE) initiative, which brings together all EU cooperation activities in the area of biodiversity and ecosystems under the same umbrella framework. The B4LIFE programme aims to contribute to socioeconomic development and the eradication of poverty. Currently, 70% of the world's poor live in rural areas, depending directly on biodiversity and ecosystems for their subsistence.  These ecosystem services provide livelihoods, enhance food and nutrition security, enable access to water and to health and contribute significantly to climate change mitigation and adaptation.

The European Commission shall partner with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and establish a new fund to tackle the global challenge of undernutrition in six countries: Bangladesh, Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Laos and Niger. EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, confirmed the EU’s commitment in supporting partner countries to reduce the number of children who are chronically undernourished by at least seven million by 2025 and its commitment of  €23.5 million for the new initiative: the National Information Platforms on Nutrition (NIPN). The initiative will provide partner countries with the tools to better monitor progress in the reduction of undernutrition, improve information and analysis about nutrition, and enable partner countries to develop well-informed and effective national nutrition policies as a result.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

CTA’s Director, Michael Hailu spoke on the panel by the EC, German Development Inistitute BMZ and the International Food Policy research Institute (IFPRI) on ‘Improving food systems for better lives’. Millions of people are living in poverty around the world, but making our food systems more nutritious, resilient, and inclusive can significantly improve their lives within the next ten years. A concluding multi-disciplinary panel discussed ‘Moving from Research to Action’ drawing on wide ranging expertise on ideas, recommendations and priorities for improving food systems with the goal of ending hunger and undernutrition in the coming decade.

Friday, 05 June 2015

The Council discussed the proposal for a regulation on organic farming in view of a general approach. It made significant progress on a number of articles. However some member states pointed out the need to reflect further on some sensitive issues such as controls and the presence of non-authorised substances in organic products and requested more time.

 

The EU is now “close to an agreement” on the proposed Novel Foods regulation. MEPs want to safeguard the Parliament’s right to scrutinise the EU list of novel foods, which the European Commission will draw up at a later stage and they also want clarification on the text on cloning. “Cloning and parliamentary oversight over the EU list of novel foods,” are the two issues that still have to be settled before the Parliament can support a first-reading deal, said James Nicholson, a British Conservative MEP. In November, MEPs on the Parliament’s Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) voted to pass a draft report on the Commission’s proposed regulation, which aims to centralise authorisation of novel foods: MEPs voted to support the European Food Safety Agency's (EFSA) definition of ‘nanomaterial’, with a 10% nanoparticle threshold for an ingredient to qualify as ‘nano’.

Friday, 22 May 2015

Beans exported from the country to the European Union (EU) market will not be subjected to 10% checks at the point of entry. This announcement comes after European Union member states met in Brussels early this week and gave exported beans a clean of bill of health after being satisfied with the progress the Government and farmers have made in efforts to tame produce with Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs). EU member countries acknowledged the positive measures Kenya has put in place to ensure beans exported do not exceed the recommended pesticide residue levels. The steps included encouragement of farmers to observe post-harvest handling and use of recommended and approved pesticides.

The Permanent Representation of the EU held a workshop, in collaboration with the ACP Secretariat on the 2015 Milan Expo. The theme chosen for the 2015 Milan Universal Exposition is “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”. Additionally, the seven proposed sub-themes of the Milan Expo 2015 - Science for Food Safety, Security and Quality; Innovation in the Agro Food Supply Chain; Technology for Agriculture and Biodiversity; Dietary Education; Solidarity and Cooperation on Food; Food for Better Lifestyles; and Food in the World’s Cultures and Ethnic Groups. These are important themes which  embraces technology, innovation, culture, traditions and creativity;

The EDES, the €30 million EU funded development programme, conducted a support mission in The Gambia aiming to strengthen the national food safety control system and to secure the flow of food products of animal and plant origin, both regionally and internationally.  The last EDES mission provided the Food Safety and Quality Authority (FSQA) with a new management tool to strengthen the performance of sanitary audits/inspections in conformity with the relevant international standards; to monitor official controls to protect the health of consumers. The EDES mission also intends to launch of the prototype of the Inspection database, which will be tailor-made to adapted to local needs. Thereafter,  be made available to other ACP countries benefiting from the EDES Programme.

The Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) – also called “The Purple Book” is the first step in a international effort to attain a sound global management system for chemical. Chemicals are often a vital part of industries, and are shipped globally in a number of products in hazardous and non-hazardous forms. Currently, it is estimated that in the EU alone  15 % of workers handle hazardous chemicals on a daily basis, and 19 % of workers report being exposed to toxic vapours for a quarter or more of their working time.