HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES – Bataan 1st District Representative Geraldine B. Roman recently filed House Bill No. 05323 urging the Food and Drug Authority (FDA) to practice global standards in handling food safety measures.
The Bill is known as “The Act directing the Food and Drug Authority to align the national food safety standards of the Philippines with international-accepted practices and ensure nationwide monitoring and compliance thereto, and for other purposes.” It was filed last March 16, 2017 pending first reading.
In a published study, food safety in the Philippines has received increasing attention due to a number of factors such as the rise or increasing number of food establishments where strict implementation of food safety regulations is needed; poverty remains a major factor to reckon with, and consequently, results to low literacy on food safety especially in the rural areas.
Recent reports stated that most Filipinos now have changed their lifestyle in relying on cooked foods which are questionable in terms of cleanliness. The demand for the inexpensive ready to eat food has increased. Street foods dominate the rising urban population’s taste giving livelihood to street food vendors where most of their earnings generated has been vastly underestimated and neglected despite their contribution to the economy because they are considered as an informal sector.
At present, there are several different agencies who execute the Philippine National Standard for food products. These are the Department of Health, Department of Agriculture, Food and Drug Authority and other minor agencies.