Increasing the competitiveness and market opportunities of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR), Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV), the Mekong Institute (MI) launched a five-day online regional training on “Preservation and Packaging for Safer Food” which will run from May 9 to 13, 2022 with support from the New Zealand Aid Programme (NZAP).
Part of the PROSAFE (Promoting Safe Food for Everyone) project’s regional course offerings, the training program is expected to strengthen the knowledge and understanding of food business operators (FBOs) on selecting food preservation and packaging technologies for safe and quality food. It will also provide a platform for promoting best practices in enhancing safety and quality of food products and minimizing loss in the food value chain in CLMV.
In her opening remarks, Ms. Maria Theresa S. Medialdia, Director of MI’s Agricultural Development and Commercialization (ADC) Department, highlighted the value of innovating the food supply chain management system to address the constant challenges and to ensure food safety. She said that “the food industry is constantly finding new and cost-effective methods to minimize food hazards to meet the increasing consumer demand for safe food. As food preservation and packaging are both crucial in protecting food from spoilage and contamination, as well as in enhancing business profits, improving the quality and safety of food products will make SMEs more competitive, resulting in greater access to wider markets.”
Attended by 35 representatives from agri-food private sector and food regulators from CLMV, the course covered four modules to improve participants’ understanding on effective food preservation and packaging that will expand marketability of food products in the region.
This is the first regional training program under the PROSAFE project in 2022. The NZAP-funded project is implementing a series of training programs each year to enhance food safety capabilities of agri-food stakeholders from the public and private sectors in CLMV.