Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has received a large grant to establish a forum for food safety. 

FSANZ received a $492,495 grant from the Department of Agriculture, Water, and Environment to help create an international forum that will collaborate on food safety. 

The initial members of the forum will include Australia, China, the Republic of Korea, Japan, and Singapore. The working title of the group is the Multilateral Food Safety Forum. The purpose of the forum is to bring together countries from the Asia-Pacific region and to permit food safety and standards agencies in different countries to work together in building international regulatory standards. 

It is FSANZ's hope that the forum will allow different countries to join forces on food safety projects to promote scientific and risk-based approaches. Countries with two-way trade will also collaborate on food safety projects. The forum also may choose to expand its membership in the future.

Australian Department of Agriculture, Water, and the Environment Deputy Secretary David Hazlehurst said the forum would improve cooperation across the Asia-Pacific area.

“By bringing these countries together, FSANZ will organize collaboration between food safety agencies across countries,” he noted.

“The forum will aim to find areas where different countries can work together on food safety projects that promote science and risk-based approaches, are consistent with international standards, and benefit trade. This forum will also mean FSANZ can work with other countries on projects that support two-way trade between markets,” said Hazlehurst.