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01 January, 2020

Strengthening compliance with food safety standards in horticulture value chains in Egypt
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01 January, 2020

Strengthening compliance with food safety standards in horticulture value chains in Egypt
  See MeetingVoir Réunionانظر اجتماع

Strengthening compliance with food safety standards in horticulture value chains in Egypt

Strengthening compliance with food safety standards in horticulture value chains in Egypt
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), with financial support from the European Union, are providing technical assistance to the Egyptian agribusiness sector to improve compliance with food safety standards in target horticulture value chains. In particular, drawing on their previous experience in other countries, the EBRD and the FAO are promoting improvements in food safety standards and practices that are required to increase the access of export oriented value chains in Egypt to high value markets.

The technical assistance project is supported by the European Union under the EBRD Trade and Competitiveness Programme, which aims at enhancing the competitiveness of small and medium enterprises (“SMEs”) in the industry, commerce and agribusiness sectors in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. In the agribusiness sector in Egypt, the programme supports SMEs to invest in new technologies, improve standards and value-added, and increase their access to high value markets.

Export of high value agricultural and food products is an important avenue for Egypt to improve its trade balance and expand value added to boost access to higher value markets which have more stringent standards. Egyptian exports have been hindered by food safety and quality issues, which have caused export rejections. Egyptian farmers' ability to meet food safety and quality requirements is a critical issue in promoting market access, and is currently one of the main reasons for product rejection on export markets. Pesticides and chemicals used by growers are of great concern to horticultural production in Egypt. Furthermore, the absence of a traceability system represents a challenge for national authorities to quickly identify and respond to compliance issues. The National Food Safety Authority (NFSA) and the Central Plant Quarantine Administration (CAPQ), in coordination with key stakeholders such as the Agricultural Export Council (AEC), Horticultural Export Improvement Association (HEIA), and private food business operators can play a crucial role in improving the food safety status in the country.