Food safety

Making better use of food contamination data


WHO developed a distance learning tool (DLT) in collaboration with the Chulabhorn Research Institute (Bangkok, Thailand), a WHO Collaborating Centre. This tool enables scientists and risk managers to access and analyse the food contamination data submitted to the Global Environment Monitoring System- Food contamination monitoring and assessment programme (GEMS/Food). Through this initiative WHO continues to work with Member States and reduce the chemical contamination of food.

WHO list of Critically Important Antimicrobials for Human Medicine (CIA list)

WHO has just published the 5th revision of the CIA list. The CIA list is intended for all stakeholders involved in managing antimicrobial resistance to ensure that all antimicrobials, especially critically important antimicrobials, are used prudently both in human and veterinary medicine. In this revision, classes of drugs categorized as highest priority critically important antimicrobials are quinolones, third and higher generation cephalosporins, macrolides/ketolides, glycopeptides and polymyxins. Polymyxins were newly added because of the increasing usage of colistin globally, the discovery of mcr-1 and mcr-2 genes, and the spread of colistin resistant bacteria via the food chain. See the full report for more information.

Women are drivers of sustainable development


Food safety is essential to good nutrition and health, which are vital to sustainable development. WHO estimates that every year, 1 in 10 people fall ill and 125,000 children under 5 years of age die from foodborne diseases. In many parts of the world, women grow and prepare the food that is sold in markets and consumed in homes, but they don’t always have access to food safety education. Efforts to improve food safety must consider the key role women play in improving the health, nutrition and development of their communities.