Food safety and quality standards are global concerns as they are important for public health and impact international trade. Consumers are increasingly concerned about the quality and safety of food and are taking unprecedented interest in the way food is produced, processed, and marketed while demanding greater quality and safety assurances from agribusinesses and food companies. Globalization of trade makes food chains longer and more complex and increases the risk of food safety incidents. Food producers and exporters of agri-food products in APO-CIRDAP member countries need to update the standards and requirements for certification. In this connection, CIRDAP organized an International Forum on Strengthening Food Safety Standards from 05-08 March 2018 at HARTI, Colombo, Sri Lanka. It was supported by the Asian Productivity Organization (APO) and HARTI.

The objectives of the programme were:

(i) To share recent developments, advanced knowledge, and emerging trends in food safety management (FSM) systems in major global markets; and

(ii) To formulate strategic recommendations for food-industry SMEs to enable them to meet the FSM standards of advanced markets.

International Forum on Strengthening Food Safety Standards in Sri Lanka March 2018 This forum was attended by 40 participants (26 overseas & 14 local, where 21 male & 19 female participant) from 15 countries, i.e. Bangladesh, Cambodia, Republic of China, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. A total of nine (9) resource persons contributed on the forum through their presentations and knowledge sharing. The programme has been finished successfully through the knowledge session of resource persons, field activities, country presentations and enthusiastic participation of all participants. At the end of the programme, resources persons along with participants formulate strategic recommendations from four days discussion.