Event inaugurated by Shri Tariq Anwar, Hon’ble MoS, Agriculture and Food Processing Industries
Gurgaon, September 12, 2013: The recently concluded TÜV SÜD – ASSOCHAM summit on food safety was a congregation of government, regulatory and industry representatives on food safety in India. Close to 20 leaders representing food regulators and businesses like PepsiCo, Coca Cola, GSK and Wrigley, addressed an audience of over 300 at the summit. The agenda of ‘self-regulations’ was addressed by the government and businesses through in-depth discussions about increasing the minimum levels of safety and quality of food in India.
Speaking at the event, Mr.Niranjan Nadkarni, CEO, TÜV SÜD South Asia stated that, “Food safety is an issue that needs urgent attention from all stakeholders of the food chain from farm to fork. It is heartening to see that experts from the industry have responded positively to our call for a collaborative approach to food safety in India. It is a moment of pride for all of us at TÜV SÜD to have hosted a successful summit that witnessed holistic participation from the food processing industry. We thank our partners ASSOCHAM for their support along with MOFPI, EIC, APEDA, QCI and NBQP.”
The event focused on the different challenges posed by globalization on food safety and the impact of the same on the Indian food industry. Experts opined that there is an immediate need for regulators to create voluntary food safety initiatives for businesses, since 90% of the food consumed in India is from the unorganized and unpackaged sector. However, given the expanse of the Indian food market, a collaborative effort of regulators, businesses as well as third party quality players such as TÜV SÜD will act as a catalyst to address the food safety issues faced by the country.
A panel dedicated to optimizing supply chain processes, discussed the health of the existing backend infrastructure for food. Speakers at the panel concluded that while India has a system in place to enable efficient supply chain management, there is need for a more proactive approach from the industry and the government to mitigate related risks. It was identified that focus on five key factors can help ensure safety of perishable foods – package design, procuring raw materials, process controls, sales and distribution and listening to consumer feedback.
The summit concluded with a panel discussion focused on the ‘effective implementation of new age media strategy’ that highlighted the need for business to constantly speak to consumers and other stakeholders and implement real time course correction with regards to safety of food – in order to win consumer confidence and manage brand reputation.
Key panelists and speakers at the event included Mr. Siraj Hussain (Secretary-MoFPI), Dr. S.K.Saxena (EIC), Mr.Anil Jauhri (NABCB), Dr. K.L. Gaba (AIFPA), Mr. Shaminder Pal Singh (PepsiCo), Mr.Prabodh Halde (Marico), Mr.Navneet Mehta (Coca Cola), Dr.-Ing Axel Stepken (TÜV SÜD), Mr. Maharaj K Pandita (Abbott Nutrition), Dr. Prabhakar Kanade (Mother Dairy), Mr. T Srinivasan (PepsiCo), Mr. Partha Gangopadhyay (Wrigley), Mr. Ishan Palit (TÜV SÜD), Ms. Kishi Arora (Foodaholics), Mr. Max Hegerman (Edelman Digital), Mr. Samir Kuckreja (NRAI) and Ms. Liz Fendt (TÜV SÜD).