A 3-day workshop on “Approach to Food Safety for Vegetables and Fruits in Bangladesh” was attended by many dignitaries from government, NGOs, academia, and industry in August 2011. The workshop commenced with a session on food policy in Bangladesh. All the speakers highlighted the importance of engaging in the horticulture sector to address nutritional security in Bangladesh.
Dr. Md. Rafiqul Islam Mondal, the Director General of BARI, emphasized the immediate need to reduce levels of post harvest losses in horticulture produce and improve food safety. He ensured those gathered that BARI was committed to developmental activities of this nature and will extend its support to such interventions.
Deputy Mission Director of USAID in Bangladesh, Dennis Sharma, spoke of the major objectives for the overall horticulture plan and emphasized the current project engagement for food safety and good agricultural practices (GAP) as a priority objective, and the activities undertaken so far. spoke of the major objectives for the overall horticulture plan and emphasized the current project engagement for food safety and good agricultural practices (GAP) as a priority objective, and the activities undertaken so far.
Dr. K. V. Raman of Cornell University, as a representative of the HortCRSP, gave an introduction to HortCRSP projects that leveraged the science and technology expertise available in US universities for developmental activities in emerging economies around the world. In continuation, K. Vijayaraghavan from Cornell University and Sathguru described the key objectives of planned initiatives for the overall development of the horticulture sector as part of the HortCRSP mission in Bangladesh.
While addressing the participants, the chief guest, Begum Matia Chowdhury, Honorable Minister for Agriculture, Government of Bangladesh, flagged the development of horticulture as a potential means to address the problem of malnutrition in Bangladesh by ensuring that the fresh produce remains free from microbiological and chemical contamination both on farm and off the farm at all stages of the value chain. She also conveyed her appreciation of the project and the activities planned under its umbrella.