By Leman Mammadova
The 25th Azerbaijan International Food Industry Exhibition – WorldFood Azerbaijan 2019 opened at Baku Expo Center on May 15.
The exhibition features diverse food industry products and related innovations from 440 companies representing 32 countries of the world.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the head of Azerbaijan Food Safety Agency Goshgar Tahmazli said that WorldFood Azerbaijan has already proved itself as a reliable platform, where, along with the demonstration of modern equipment and technologies, products and services in the food industry, mutually beneficial ties are established, conditions and opportunities are created for entering new markets and establishing effective cooperation.
He noted that since its foundation, the Agency has been participating in the exhibition, causing considerable interest among its other participants.
“So this time, its latest achievements and laboratory equipment were met at the exhibition with great interest. For example, in the area designated for the Food Safety Agency it is possible to observe the definition of food safety indicators, get acquainted with samples of laboratory research conducted in crisis situations, as well as food products with high export potential which are most exposed to the risk of counterfeit,” Tahmazli said.
This year, for the first time in the Caucasus, the Agency introduces the third level mobile bio-security laboratory. In the case of an outbreak of animal and bird diseases, this laboratory has the potential to detect the disease within two to three hours based on samples taken.
In addition, mobile veterinary laboratory, Food Safety Institute services, provided to entrepreneurs operating in the food industry, are presented to visitors.
Within the framework of the WorldFood Azerbaijan 2019 exhibition, the 2nd Baku Food Safety Conference will also be held on May 17.
Azerbaijan’s Food Safety Agency helps ensure the regulatory framework of food safety and carry out risk analysis, hygiene certification, as well as provide a quality certificate for food products exported to foreign countries, ensure state control over the protection of the rights of consumers of food products.
Twenty-one laboratories were created in the country to conduct analysis in the field of food safety. All of them were established within the framework of the "State program for ensuring food safety in Azerbaijan for 2019-2025”.
The state program is designed to provide the country’s population with safe and qualitative food products, increase the transparency and efficiency of the food safety system and bring it in line with international requirements.
The implementation of the state program will provide the population with healthy and safe food products and greatly reduce the number of foodborne diseases.
At the same time, the state program envisages bringing food standards and norms into conformity with international requirements, improving the issue of providing the population with qualitative food and food safety, improving the quality and safety of food products and, thus, increasing the competitiveness of local products and their export potential.
Azerbaijan continues to create favorable conditions for stimulating agricultural production and takes important measures to ensure the long-term provision of the country with high-quality agricultural products.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
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