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26.11.18

Research to protect the poorest

Infant formula contaminated with melamine or lead threatens the health of thousands of babies | © Veterinarians without Borders

Food safety is an issue of growing significance in our globalized world. In order to reduce costs, the food industry increasingly relies on raw materials produced in Africa or Southeast Asia. In developing countries, however, food controls are often unreliable or completely lacking.

At the Vetmeduni Vienna, the working group "Global Food Safety" headed by Prof. Dagmar Schoder (President of Veterinarians without Borders) focuses on this important issue. Not only for the safety of domestic consumers, but also for the protection of people in developing countries, who are by far more vulnerable: Malnourished people are more likely to suffer from diseases, like tuberculosis or HIV. Weakened by these ailments, they are more vulnerable to food-borne infectious diseases, such as cholera. In addition, inferior or even harmful products are more likely to be sold on the African than on the European market.

Prof. Schoder and her team revealed a food scandal in East Africa regarding baby food contaminated with melamine and lead. As a result, Prof. Schoder was awarded the prestigious Heinrich-Stockmeyer-Prize.

More about this topic:
World Science Day: Global responsibility for man and environment
World Food Day 2018: Ruthless food production?

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