At Cargill, safe food is fundamental to our business. Our customers rely on us for quality, and for our ability to safeguard the wholesomeness and integrity of the products we buy, produce and sell. We are committed to providing safe food and animal feed products and services. We seek to provide leadership in the effort to achieve more transparent, harmonized, science-based, global systems that will enhance public health outcomes and strengthen food security.
Food safety is an increasingly important public health issue, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Governments all over the world are intensifying their efforts to improve food safety. These efforts are in response to an increasing number of food safety problems and rising consumer concerns.
Food safety systems should be founded on science and risk-based, internationally recognized standards that improve public health. To that end:
Cargill’s food safety systems are based on the standards and principles of Codex Alimentarius. The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) principles are used as the basis for animal health systems and the international Plant Protection Commission (IPPC) principles for plant health issues.
Collaborative public-private partnerships built on mutual trust can improve public health outcomes, enhance food safety education, training and outreach, develop leadership and build animal health, food safety and public health capacity. Among other activities:
We are a founding member of the Global Initiative Food systems Leadership (GIFSL) which is an international consortium of educational institutions working toward global food security and sustainability. GIFSL partners with intergovernmental organization, food industry companies and non-governmental organization. It focuses on training to develop the next generations of worldwide food system leadership committed to global food security. As part of the initiative, Cargill established in 2006 an endowed chair for Global Food Systems Leadership at the University of Minnesota, which provides the training and serves as the Secretariat for GIFSL. In 2008 GIFSL delivered the first of a 5-year food safety program for Chinese officials who traveled to Europe and the U.S to learn from intergovernmental agencies, academics, and food companies.
Food safety involves continuous improvement, and Cargill innovations have helped food safety. We taught thousands of small poultry farmers in Thailand and China to recognize avian influenza and protect themselves, their families and their flocks from it. Cargill trained Thai government officials to conduct real-time polymerase-chain reaction (PCR) testing for avian influenza H5N1, a strain that can be deadly for humans. We also donated testing kits until the government could secure its own supply.
Ultimately, food safety comes down to people. For our part, we maintain a dedicated Corporate Food Safety & Regulatory Affairs (CFSRA) group, which provides global leadership on food safety, regulatory affairs, animal health and quality assurance for Cargill businesses. Food safety coordinators positions in each business are accountable for implementing CFSRA policies, procedures, and continuous improvement in these areas. We seek to foster a good safety culture in which every employee takes responsibility for food safety.