The Western Pacific Region faces a wide array of food safety problems. Both biological and chemical contamination of food are prevalent. Diseases carried by live animals and poultry, such as Avian Influenza, also present a risk to consumers.
Factors contributing to foodborne illness in the region include: unsafe aquaculture practices, intensive farming practices, new packaging and processing technologies improperly applied, marine toxins, rapid urbanization, increased international trade in food and feed, lack of adequate food labelling.
Some Western Pacific countries have well-developed food safety programs, while others lack adequate food safety infrastructure do to lack of resources. Wealthier nations, such as Australia and New Zealand, have more developed regulatory programs because of their economic reliance on agricultural exports.
Consumers organizations in the Region
Western Pacific consumer organizations are very active in food safety promotion. They work to develop food safety laws, promote food labelling, and educate consumers on food-related issues. Product safety testing by national consumer organizations have exposed products with dangerous levels of dyes, heavy metals, and additives, as well as antibiotic residues in fresh fish and seafood.
For the most recent news and alerts from the Western Pacific Region, visit the Safe Food International Regional News website. Read about the following topics from the region:
- Western Pacific Food/Waterborne Illness Outbreaks
- Western Pacific Food Safety Studies
- Western Pacific Food Safety Policy Issues
- Animal/Plant Health Issues
For more information about the East Asia & Pacific Region, see the SFI publication Global & Local.