Cyprus participating in "Safe2Eat" campaign for third year

Together with 17 other countries, Cyprus is participating this year, and for the third time, in the "Safe2Eat" campaign, formerly known as "#EUChooseSafeFood" and conducted by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), enabling consumers to make food choices with a sense of security and trust.

The campaign returns with a new name and a renewed commitment to enhance the information and awareness of European citizens about food safety, an EFSA press release said.

This year, the campaign is expanding its reach, as 18 countries join forces to help consumers make informed decisions when choosing their food. Participating countries for 2024 are Romania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Greece, Estonia, Croatia, Italy, Latvia, Cyprus, Slovenia, Spain, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Ireland and North Macedonia.

European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, welcomed the launch of the #Safe2EatEU campaign in Cyprus for the third year, noting, among other things, that "European citizens are among the best protected and informed in the world, on issues related to the food they consume."

"The European Commission, always having the protection of consumer health as a priority, will continue to ensure the highest standards of food safety and quality across the EU and actively contribute internationally in this area," Kyriakides added.

Health Minister, Michalis Damianos, welcomed the launch of the #Safe2Eat campaign, underlining the importance that the State attaches to the prevention and protection of citizens' health.

As he said, "the prevention and protection of citizens' health is a priority for the state".

He noted that the competent Food Safety Services of the Republic of Cyprus, in cooperation with the competent Authorities of the European Union, are constantly alert to ensure the quality and safety of the food that reaches the consumer's plate.

"The Ministry of Health, through the official food quality and safety control programs carried out by the Health Services and the State General Chemistry, aims to prevent and protect Public Health", he underlined.

A percentage of 70% are interested in food safety, 60% believes information too technical

A survey conducted by EFSA in collaboration with IPSOS in 2023 showed that almost 70% of Europeans express an interest in food safety. However, around 60% feel that the information given on food safety is too technical and difficult to understand.

In response, this new campaign aims to communicate the science behind food safety in a clear, accurate, yet reassuring and understandable way. The aim is to enable citizens to make informed decisions about their food consumption, ensuring their safety and health in their daily choices.

It is further added that with the slogan #Safe2Eat.EU the campaign continues to focus on informing and educating citizens about various aspects of food safety. These include food-related illnesses, proper food handling techniques, the importance of reading food labels (for example, the use-by date), and promoting food waste reduction practices.

The campaign also emphasises the importance of a balanced diet, the safety of dietary supplements and the need to scientifically substantiate health claims made on food products. In addition, it seeks to raise awareness about the safety of food contact materials and objects, food additives and novel foods, as well as the presence of food allergens.

"Across Europe, every day, consumers choose what to buy and what to eat, taking into account a number of factors such as cost, taste, sustainability and the origin of food. Thanks to the high standards for food safety in the EU, they can be sure that, whatever their choices, the food they buy and eat is safe," said EFSA Executive Director Bernhard Url.

"The #Safe2EatEU campaign aims to connect the science of food safety with the food we enjoy on our plate, enabling citizens to make food decisions with confidence," he concluded.

(Source: CNA)

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