PACER Plus-funded food safety training concludes in Solomon Islands

28 Apr 2023

A food safety training program for food processors and exporters on food safety requirements and the importance of compliance and implementation of food safety plans (HACCP) was successfully concluded this week in Honiara, Solomon Islands. The training, which was held from 24-25 April, was conducted by the Food Safety Unit within the Environmental Health Division of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.

The two-day training was funded by the Pacific Agreement for Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus). PACER Plus is a unique trade and investment agreement aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals. The agreement is designed to support participating countries to stimulate economic growth by becoming more active partners in, and benefit from, regional and global trade. Ten countries are currently parties to the agreement: Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.

The training program aimed to provide awareness to food processors and exporters on the food safety requirements of the Pure Food Act 1996 and subsequent legislation, and most critically, for facilitation of food export. Compliance with HACCP is a critical requirement mandated by law for accessing food export markets. The program also aimed to train food processors, exporters, and handlers on the important issues of food safety and increase their understanding and desire for improvement and compliance. More than 20 participants participated in the workshop.

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services expressed its gratitude for receiving the necessary support to conduct the training, and acknowledged the Department of External Trade under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade as the national focal point for PACER Plus.

Deputy Secretary to MFAET, Mr Cornelius Walegerea, said:

This training will contribute to making a difference in our food processing and export industries by improving businesses in Solomon Islands to produce better quality and safe products, and allowing our exporters to be more effective players in the regional and international markets.

PACER Plus Implementation Unit (PPIU) is committed to supporting PACER Plus parties to improve food safety and increase their competitiveness in the global marketplace. PPIU will continue to support capacity building efforts on food safety in Solomon Islands and other PACER Plus parties.