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Food Chain Dubai 2013 closes on a stellar note

The conference threw the spotlight on the new Dubai Food Code, crucial issues in maintaining temperature throughout the cold chain, and on the importance of training and enhanced end-user participation

| | Jun 15, 2013 | 5:24 pm
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The conference threw the spotlight on the new Dubai Food Code, crucial issues in maintaining temperature throughout the cold chain, and on the importance of training and enhanced end-user participation

Food Chain Dubai 2013, held on the 22nd and 23rd of May at the Constellation Ballroom of The Address Dubai Marina Hotel, attracted participation from senior Government officials, industry leaders and technical experts, as well as from key decision-makers and representatives from farms, hypermarkets, supermarkets, restaurants, malls, hospitals, and food safety and consumer groups.

may2013-region08In his inauguration address, H.E. Eng. Saif Mohamed Al Shara, Acting Undersecretary, The Agricultural Affairs and Animal Sector of the UAE Ministry of Environment and Water, highlighted the efforts of the federal and local government bodies in the UAE to formulate and make available laws and legislation to ensure the safety of food and to educate a wider range of consumers regarding the importance of food safety.

Dr Hashim Al Nuaimi, Director of the Consumer Protection Department, Ministry of Economy, discussed some of the provisions contained in the handbooks on Consumer Rights and Responsibilities and on Federal Law No. 24 – on consumer protection.

Asia Abdulwahab Al Raeesi, Head of Studies and Food Planning Section, Food Control Department of Dubai Municipality, spoke about Dubai Municipality’s recent food safety initiatives and future programmes, giving emphasis on the Dubai Food Code, released in April 2013, and the Food Safety Clinic, a specialised programme geared towards the improvement of the performance of establishments that have a long history of non-compliance.

Other important topics covered on Day 1 of the event included developing a food safety culture; challenges in maintaining the cold chain and possible transport refrigeration solutions for each; international legislation and regulations in transport refrigeration; remote monitoring and management of commercial refrigeration equipment; cold chain management best practices in warehouses; mould remediation, duct cleaning and maintenance from a food safety perspective and the critical importance of proper training for food handlers.

Completing the array of speakers who presented on Day 1 were Prakash Krishnamoorthy, Sales Manager (Middle East), Carrier Transicold Europe – Gulf Office; Andre Stumpf, Technical Expert and Sustainability Manager of Carrier Transicold; Muhammed Ali Shah, Supply Chain Manager, Global Shipping & Logistics; James Day, Managing Director, Smashing! Cleaning Services; Ghaleb Abusaa, CEO, The Three Factors Company (en3 Solutions); Rafiq Al Khatib, Managing Director, rmk-the experts and Abdul Rashid, CEO, Pillsbury Consulting.

Day 1 was chaired by Richard Sprenger, Chairman, Highfield Middle East and Asia Awarding Body for Compliance.

The second day of the event saw presentations from senior officials of Dubai Municipality and a live consulting session on common design, installation and O&M challenges faced by food establishments. The session saw participation from a panel of refrigeration experts, consultants and maintenance service providers.

Sultan Ali Al Taher, Head of the Food Inspection Section, Food Control Department, Dubai Municipality, presented on some parameters for restaurants, catering units, hotels and convenience stores to prevent temperature abuse. He highlighted that items sold as cooked food should be prepared at a required minimum internal temperature of 75°C. He also said that thermometers should be regularly calibrated to ensure accuracy.

Bobby Krishna, Principal Food Studies and Surveys Officer, Food Control Department, Dubai Municipality, extensively spoke about Dubai food safety regulations and initiatives contained in the new Dubai Food Code. In his presentation, he said that the new Code contained provisions on proper ventilation, sickness reporting, training of food handlers, management of allergens and on raw ready-to-eat food of animal origin.

Safwan Saifuddin Altikarli, Food Planning & Studies Specialist, Food Control Department of Dubai Municipality and Muhammad Altaf, Senior Animal Product Hygiene Officer, Food Control Department, Dubai Municipality, talked about the food trade control and labelling system and temperature-control parameters in warehouses, hypermarkets and supermarkets, respectively.

The expert panel in the live consulting session comprised Abusaa, Day and Steven Pakenham-Walsh, Consulting Engineer, Seventeen FZE.

Speakers on Day 2, included Jamie Ferguson, Regional Manager (MENA), Meat and Livestock Australia; Michael Wunsch, Managing Director of Barakat Quality Plus; Dr Suheel Ahmed, CEO of Arabian Farms Development Co and Bjorn Ostbye, Project Development Manager, EMKE Group (Lulu Hypermarkets).

The second day of the event was chaired by Dr Joanne Taylor, Training and Research Director, TSI Ltd.

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