Mekong Institute, in collaboration with Lam Dong Sub-department of Rural Development, rolled out the PROSAFE “Postharvest Safe Food Handling for Vegetables” training from April 7 to 9, 2021 in Da Lat City, Lam Dong Province, Vietnam.
“The growing demand for safe food in Vietnam elevated food safety as a public priority,” Ms. Maria Theresa Medialdia, Director of Agricultural Development and Commercialization, stated in her opening remarks before underscoring that broad-based adherence to postharvest management systems will help farmers, producers, and sellers consistently deliver quality and safe fresh produce.
Mr. Pham Hung, Head of the Lam Dong Sub-Department of Rural Development, highlighted that Lam Dong is considered the vegetable bowl of Vietnam and serves as the main supplier for Ho Chi Minh City and southern provinces in the country.
“The Lam Dong government is committed to establishing our province’s reputation of producing quality and safe vegetables in the domestic and international markets. This is why we are taking great steps in involving all actors in the value chain to better understand and practice the proper handling of our vegetables,” he said.
Twenty-six representatives from agricultural management agencies, farmer associations, cooperatives, and agri-food companies in Lam Dong Province were exposed to the basic concepts of postharvest safe food handling, food safety hazards, and post-harvest practices, as well as water quality in postharvest processes and biofilm formation.
In addition to the didactic sessions, a trainer from Da Lat University and expert provided information on postharvest technologies and best practices in the sorting, grading, pre-treatment, packaging, storing, and transport of fresh vegetables from farms to markets.
At the end of the training course, participants will apply what they have learned to improve farming practices, ensure vegetable safety, and reduce food losses.
Supported by the New Zealand Aid Programme, PROSAFE is a five-year project that provides training and support services to the government, agriculture, and private sectors in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam. The project aims to enhance their food safety knowledge and expertise, as well as assist them in preparing and implementing appropriate food safety regulations and standards for selected value chains and market outlets within and outside their respective countries.