HCMC seeks clean-food suppliers

Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 09:00

To ensure food safety, more high-quality suppliers and better consumer awareness are crucial. – VNA/VNS Photo My Phuong

Authorities in HCM City have been monitoring food safety violations more closely but challenges remain, including finding more suppliers of clean, high-quality products.

Consumers also need to be better aware of clean food standards and not buy from untrustworthy places just because they are cheap and convenient, according to experts.

In recent years, the city has taken steps to ensure high quality and traceability.

As of September, the city’s Food Safety Management Board had provided certification for 128 facilities that produce a total of 110,000 tonnes of food annually.

Pham Khanh Phong Lan, head of the board, said that finding more sources of high quality food was crucial to ensure safety.

“I’m not saying that food products from traditional markets aren’t safe, but buying from supermarkets is usually safer,” she said. “We would like customers to actively support clean food and not just say that they want clean food but continue to buy from cheap sources with unclear origin.”

Phan Thanh Tam, deputy director of the city’s Department of Health’s Nutrition Centre, said that retailers should monitor the quality of the goods they sell, while firms need to invest in high-quality production processes.

Nguyen Huynh Trang, deputy director of the city’s Department of Industry and Trade, said that modern retailers have been playing a big role in promoting food safety by applying high standards and raising awareness about high-quality goods.

Many retailers are working with farmers to help them produce goods that adhere to high-quality standards.

Next year, the board will publish a list of traditional markets which offer safe food.

Abundance of goods

With an abundance of goods, the city has planned more convenience stores in the suburbs, new residential areas, industrial zones and export processing zones. These new stores will enable producers to distribute goods directly to shops and give consumers greater access to goods.

The decision also provides consumers with more shopping channels and prevents sellers from accumulating goods and raising prices during the Tet shopping season.

Small shops and traders now even offer delivery services as consumers can place orders by phone and get the goods at their front door.

With the development of the retail markets, shopping has become more convenient for consumers.

As such, sellers must keep up with the changing demands of consumers as they now have more choices than before, meaning competition is now getting tougher. — VNS

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