Today, Monday, the Minister of Trade and Export Promotion, Tayeb Zitouni, supervised the opening of the scientific day for a healthy diet under the slogan: “Diet and health: disease and cure.”
The Minister said in his intervention: Organizing this scientific day on a healthy diet and proper nutrition in general came at a timely manner in view of the changes in consumption patterns in Algerian society, which affected all age groups of consumers, in view of the technological progress in the field of food industries and the changing living conditions that have become These rapid changes are characterized by speed and the multiplicity of offers in the field of consumer goods, which were also accompanied by several changes and measures by the concerned ministerial sectors, including our ministerial sector, which has identified among its strategic priorities, enhancing the protection of consumer health and security, as well as ensuring healthy and safe foods in line with nutritional needs. For all categories of consumers.
In this context, and since we cannot talk about healthy food if it is not safe, our ministerial department has strengthened its legal and regulatory system related to food safety. To mention but not as a limitation, we recall the entry into force, since February 1, 2023, of the joint ministerial decision dated December 1, 2020, specifying the conditions and modalities for applying the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) system, which requires economic operators to put this system in place. Their facilities in order to assess risks and better control the safety of the food they produce. Also, fraud suppression laboratories have been strengthened with human resources and scientific equipment, so that our sector has 35 currently active laboratories, and the desired goal is to establish a fraud suppression laboratory at the level of each state.
Also, within the framework of preventing food poisoning, which our departments have been monitoring since 2007, our ministerial department, in coordination with its external departments, prepares analytical and evaluation reports on food poisoning cases recorded every year, so that this annual follow-up has enabled our departments, in coordination with the ministerial sectors and concerned bodies, to take several measures to reduce the risk of food poisoning. Of this phenomenon, the most important of which we can mention is the preparation in 2017 of a draft rapid intervention protocol in the event of mass food poisoning (it was updated and enriched in 2020), which is considered an effective mechanism to ensure coordination between all concerned interests in the event of mass food poisoning.
On the other hand, it should be noted that the summary of the analytical reports on the phenomenon of food poisoning prepared by our ministerial department has become a reference upon which all concerned ministerial sectors and consumer protection associations rely in the awareness-raising operations programmed every year, especially around the summer season.
In order to control the phenomenon of food poisoning, and within the framework of institutional coordination, our ministerial department shared its database related to food poisoning from 2007-2022 with the National Agency for Health Security in order to exploit it to analyze this phenomenon in depth and develop a digitized mechanism to follow up on this phenomenon in real time.
Since ensuring safe food is not enough to ensure that it is nutritious and healthy, and within the framework of promoting proper nutrition and preventing non-communicable diseases (obesity, blood pressure, diabetes,…), our ministerial department has taken a series of measures in the field of reducing excessive consumption and gradually reducing For sugar, salt and fatty substances in some of the most widely consumed foodstuffs, this has been since the year 2016 until today and work is continuing, so that these efforts were crowned with the issuance in the Official Gazette of nine (09) regulatory texts regulating several foodstuffs: coffee, nutritional labeling, sugar, salt, jam. Fermented milk, margarine, chocolate and cocoa, refreshing drinks.
Finally, and in view of the importance of media, awareness-raising and neighborhood work to establish a healthy and rational consumer culture, the interests of our ministerial department at the central level and its external interests across 58 states periodically carry out awareness-raising campaigns on topics related to the prevention of food poisoning, food safety, and the gradual reduction in the consumption of salt, sugar and fatty substances. As well as all relevant regulatory texts issued in the Official Gazette, these awareness campaigns affect all segments of society in all places, including schools, universities, cultural centers, and camping centers… and this is with the involvement of the media, consumer protection associations, and the interests of the relevant ministerial bodies and sectors.
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