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The World Health Organisation (WHO) says the first-ever “World Food Safety Day’’ will be celebrated globally on Friday June 7, to raise awareness on the role of food in sustaining life and promoting good health.

WHO said in a statement on its website on Wednesday that the organisation in collaboration with the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the UN would every year, facilitate Member States effort to celebrate the day.

It said that the day was adopted by the UN General Assembly in December 2018 as part of its efforts to mainstream food safety in the public agenda and reduce the burden of food borne diseases globally.

According to WHO, food borne diseases impede socioeconomic development by straining healthcare systems and harming national economies, tourism and trade.

“With an estimated 600 million cases of food borne diseases annually, almost one in 10 people in the world fall ill after eating contaminated food; food borne diseases is an increasing threat to human health.“

“Children under five years of age carry 40 per cent of the food borne disease burden with 125,000 deaths every year.“

“Access to sufficient amounts of safe and nutritious food is therefore key to sustaining life and promoting good health. “Food safety is also key to achieving several UN Sustainable Development Goals and is a shared responsibility between governments, producers and consumers.“

“Everybody has a role to play from farm to table to ensure food we consume is safe and will not cause damage to our health,” it stated. The world health body said the theme for this year’s celebration is “Food Safety, everyone’s business”. (NAN)

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