Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

2nd International Conference on Food Safety and Security


15-17 October 2018. Pretoria. 2nd International Conference on Food Safety and SecurityTheme: Next Generation Food Safety Technologies addressing Sustainable Development Goals. 

Prof Lise Korsten (UP),
Prof Stephanie Burton (Vice principal-UP)
& Dr John Purchase Agbiz #FSAS2018
The conference was jointly hosted by the University of Pretoria; DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Food Security, University of Johannesburg, Human Sciences Research Council, and the Agricultural Research Council in South Africa.

In South Africa, one of the objectives of the Department of Science and Technology (DST 2011-2016 strategy) is to reduce poverty through technology by improving socio-economic status and food security that is sustainable and vibrant in the urbanizing spaces and rural communities. Therefore the next generation innovative technologies are required in the field of food safety especially within developing countries. Combining the force of indigenous food safety knowledge and practices as well as those of scientific research is key to achieving these goals.


Keynote Addresses 
  • Dr John Purchase, Agbiz, Agricultural Business Chamber

    "While South Africa ranks quite well in terms of national food security at 44th place globally, household food security is a big problem. In South Africa, 70% of households are food insecure, based on high unemployment. "

    "In terms of food safety and quality South Africa ranks: 53rd .But this ranking was in 2016 before the listeriosis outbreak, which would have severely impacted South Africa’s rankings). The country’s agricultural competitiveness has regressed, but there has been a concerted effort to improve that, with some areas presenting significant global opportunity. There was declining competitiveness in wheat, groundnuts, sugarcane and white maize."
     James Stack, Kansas State University, US


    "Out of 36 commodities, we are a net exporter of 26. If we become locally competitive, we can make money out of them, drive the economy and create opportunities for new entrants. If we look at beef, citrus and a couple of other industries, we can create aggregation models to bring black producers into high value chains and access global markets"

    "If the regulatory framework is improved, then agriculture can create an extra one million jobs in South Africa, but a proper public-private partnership structure is necessary. Food security and food safety are critical to a country’s wellbeing,” he concluded. “This is a complex concept and directly linked to a country’s competitiveness and specifically the competitiveness of its agro-food sector. Of late, South Africa has regressed on both counts, which is a wake-up call. But there is a turnaround strategy in the making.”
  • Food safety through the lens of microbial ecology Shirley Micallef, University of Maryland, US
  • Prof Korsten has addressed Parliament
    on Food Safety Control and has developed
    a national framework for Government
    to develop a Food Control Authority.
  • The Global Plant Biosecurity - Food Security Challenge: Protecting Plant Systems to Keep People Healthy James Stack, Kansas State University, US
Presentations (random)

Listeriosis outbreak
  • Asymmetry in Food Safety Information - The Case of the Recent Listeriosis outbreak and Marginalised Consumers in South Africa Marlene Louw, University of Pretoria and Bureau for Food and Agricultural policy
  • Independent surveillance of Listeria monocytogenes in ReadyTo-Eat meat polony, prior and during the 2017-2018 South African outbreak of listeriosis Lise Korsten and German Villamizar-Rodríguez, University of Pretoria
Food Safety Standards and culture

  • Attainment of Global Food Safety Standards in South Africa, A Tall Mountain To Climb – A Family Physician’s Perspective Fundile Nyathi, Proactive Health Solutions
  • Harmonization and application of SPS regulations and standards to facilitate trade and
    ensuring consumer health protection: Challenges and perspectives in the developing world
    Benoit Gnonlonfin, Economic Community of West African States
  • Food safety culture – time to think beyond our systems Linda Jackson, Food Focus
  • The moral dilemma of safe food vs food security Francois Stepman, Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Theme 4: Pesticides and mycotoxins: a food safety challenge Subtheme: Mycotoxins
  • Groundnut aflatoxin exposure and the food safety policy environment – need for a systems approach Willeke De Bruin, University of Pretoria
  • Distribution and control of mycotoxins in food and feed commodities: An update on research findings at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa Patrick Njobeh, University of Johannesburg
  • Aflatoxin human exposure in Africa and challenges in management and control strategies Sheila Okoth, University of Nairobi
  • Fumonisin Contamination as Food Safety Concern on Maize Grown in Rural Communities of the Eastern Cape Bongani Kubheka, Dohne Agricultural Development Institute
  • Aflatoxin contamination of grain in sub-Saharan Africa: Public health implication, application of novel postharvest technology in grain drying and the role of policy in adoption Francis Agbali, University of Kentucky
  • The Conference line-up includes an impressive
    cohort of students and early career researchers
  • Multi-mycotoxin risk assessment among adult maize consumers living in rural subsistence farming areas in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa Hester-Mari Burger, Cape Peninsula University of Technology

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