Improving food security is vital to the sustainability of the food system and development of human capital necessary for Cambodia to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Prime Minister Hun Sen delivered the message during the 9th National Nutrition Day, held under the theme "Safer Food, Better Health" on November 6. He said food safety is critical for everyone's health, lifestyle, and well-being.
The Council for Agricultural and Rural Development, relevant ministries, development partners, civil society, and the private sector collaborated to host the 9th National Nutrition Day.
Every year on November 6, National Nutrition Day is observed with the goal of creating public awareness throughout the country about the importance of food security and nutrition in contributing to human capital development. In addition, economic growth and social advancement are aided.
According to Cambodia Demographic and Health (CDH) Survey 2021-2022 findings, the stunting rate of children under the age of five has decreased from 32 percent to 22 percent. The underweight rate has also decreased from 24 percent to 16 percent, but the rate of thinning of children under five appears to have remained constant at 9.8 percent from 2014 to 2021.
"This food safety campaign will continue to be like a downpour to raise knowledge to all Cambodians about the significance of food safety and access to safe nutritious food. Food businesses have to follow the legislation of food safety law that guideline system hygiene, safety, quality, and sustainable food production," according to a news release.
The Cambodian government has made a number of proposals to boost progress on food safety, food security, and nutrition for systematic progress. This includes continuing to execute food safety regulations, enhancing food quality, and food safety from farm to table. Law enforcement has also strengthened to ensure all food safety requirements are followed.
You Sokun, deputy provincial governor of Kampot, said the promotion of food security is essential for the sustainability of the food system and the development of human capital, and is necessary to meet the SGDs goals.
“It is important to promote the food security system as a need to develop human capital to achieve the 2030 goals. However, the issue of nutrition and food safety still has an impact on people's overall health, as well as that of their children,” he said.
Sokun added, “Due to the growing economy, people now eat until they are full and eat healthily, thus reducing nutrition problems, ensuring food security, and ensuring food safety is a priority in Cambodia.”
Food safety is a process to prevent chemicals from entering food at all stages of production, from harvest to table. Six ministries are involved in enforcing the law regarding food safety, according to Phan Oun, Director General, Directorate-General of Consumer Protection, Competition, and Fraud Repression (CCF).
“In partnership with other ministries and organizations concerned with food safety quality, the Ministry of Commerce is authorized to coordinate the administration of food safety quality. In order to jointly implement the law on food safety, the ministry is now formulating technical regulations and assigning tasks,” Phan Oun said.
On June 11, the National Assembly enacted the Food Safety Law, which establishes the framework and methods for controlling and assuring the safety, quality, hygienic standards, and legality of food at all points in the food production chain to safeguard health, and utilize and guarantee ethical food trading.