Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw (left), interacts with Tarrant High School student, Brianna Robertson, at an open day hosted by the Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Division (FSPID), at the playfield of the Hope Gardens’ offices of the Ministry in Kingston on October 31. At centre is a representative from Caribbean Dreams, Shaquiera Cohall, one of the sponsors and exhibitors at the event .
Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, says Jamaica has an active food safety programme to safeguard the country against the spread of plant and animal diseases that pose threats to consumers and threaten trade relations and economies.
Addressing an open day hosted by the Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Division (FSPID), at the playfield of the Ministry’s Hope Gardens’ offices in Kingston on October 31, Minister Shaw noted that several policies undergird Jamaica’s food safety programme.
They include a National Plant Health Policy and Implementation Plan, a National Emergency Plant Pest Committee, National Plant Health Board and a Plant Health coordinating committee.
“Food safety is everybody’s concern and responsibility but government has recognised its responsibility and leadership role in this matter,” he said.
The open day was being held as part of FSPID’s continued celebrations of being the first ISO/IEC 17020 accredited inspection body in Jamaica.
The accreditation specifies requirements for the operation of bodies performing inspection.
The open day also aimed to showcase the work of the division and to sensitize and educate attendees about food inspection regulatory bodies in Jamaica.
Mr. Shaw used the opportunity to commend the FSPID on the growth of the division over the years, which has led to the creation of seven technical units; among them are the microbiology and pesticide residue laboratories.
Meanwhile, in her remarks, Acting Chief Food Storage Officer, Tamara Moore said her division takes the business of food safety seriously.
“The fact that people can eat food freely and enjoy a meal without thinking or fearing getting ill speaks volumes (for our work). The FSPID inspectors can be found in the warehouses, supermarkets, hotels, ports, and schools or just about anywhere that food is sold or manufactured… Our priority is to ensure that food safety is not compromised,” she said.
Mrs. Moore asserted that having been declared an accredited body by the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC) gives a stamp of approval that the division is effective, efficient, meets customer requirements and offers the kind of service expected of it.
Efforts are being made by the division to achieve accreditation in other areas.
During the open day, the FSPID presented awards to two students from the Tarrant High School in Kingston, who placed first and second in its poster competition.
Welcome to the official website of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.
The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF) has been charged with the responsibility of driving the integration of the production of primary agricultural produce along all the stages of the supply chain through to value added and facilitating full commercialization of outputs of the agriculture, manufacturing, and service sectors.
We have, therefore, placed much energy and enthusiasm into the development of this website to provide timely information on the Ministry, our agencies and programmes.
4 St. Lucia Avenue, Kingston 5, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 968-7116
Fax: (876) 960-7422
Hope Gardens, Kingston 6, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 927-1731-50 / (876) 619-1731
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Fridays: 8:30 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.