FOOD safety and how to protect Australia's reputation for producing fresh produce is the focus of a forum at the University of Sydney tomorrow.Head of the Plant and Food Sciences department of the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment at the University of Sydney Associate Professor Robyn McConchie said it was vital for the industry to work together.
"The 2006 spinach crisis in the US and the European sprout problems of 2011 demonstrate the importance of our industry working together from paddock to plate to ensure continued fresh food safety in Australia,'' Prof McConchie said.
"The forum brings together international experts, representatives of government, industry associations, growers, packers and processers, wholesalers and retailers, food safety trainers and practitioners from Australia and New Zealand, all with a focus on protecting and enhancing food quality and safety in fresh produce.''
Centre for Produce Safety at the University of California chief executive Bonnie Fernandez-Fenaroli is lined up as keynote speaker.
"One of the CPS priorities is to support industry-wide food safety programs by making scientific research available through reports, webinars and direct access to experts,'' Ms Fernandez-Fenaroli said.
The CPS is a collaborative partnership that leverages the combined expertise of industry, government and the scientific and academic communities to focus on research that preserves and enhances food safety.
A taskforce initiated by the Australian Produce Marketing Association will work collaboratively with industry, research and regulatory communities, to identify research priorities for Australia and to facilitate communication and outreach.
Expert speakers from the US Produce Marketing Association, the Australian and New Zealand Produce Marketing Association, Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) and the University of Sydney will also present.
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