Organise by the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), the Conference on Strengthening Control Systems to Prevent Risk of Food Fraud is underway in Abu Dhabi until 24 April 2024. The conference aims to showcase best practices and global advancements in combating food fraud.

Themed Together to Combat Food Fraud, the conference will feature participation from representatives of regulatory authorities in GCC countries, alongside experts from leading global regulators in the field of combating food fraud and international organisations. Representatives from regulatory authorities at the UAE level and stakeholders from the private sector including producers, manufacturers and food establishments will also be in attendance.

The objectives of the conference will include discussing the implementation of anti-food fraud procedures at the national level, exchanging information and experiences among participating authorities on detecting food fraud cases and verifying fraudulent practices, and assessing the impact of food fraud practices on food supply chains to identify necessary measures to combat these practices. The conference aims to develop early warning systems, risk management strategies, and enhance detection, prediction, and evaluation of food fraud cases, while raising awareness of the risks posed to consumers and the food sector due to food fraud.

Her Excellency Dr Mariam Hareb Al Suwaidi, Deputy Director General for Operational Affairs at ADAFSA, emphasised the conference's importance in reviewing and exchanging the latest global practices and developments in combating food fraud and developing a roadmap for collective work at the local and regional levels to monitor and combat food fraud practices across all stages of the food chain.

Her Excellency Dr Mariam Hareb Al Suwaidi said: "ADAFSA is currently implementing a comprehensive roadmap to develop a strategy to combat food fraud throughout all stages of the food chain in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. This requires intensifying national efforts, cooperation, coordination, and integration among the various regulatory bodies in the country and stakeholders from producers, manufacturers, food establishments, and consumers to protect society and support fair practices in the food trade.

“Organising this international conference underscores ADAFSA's commitment to promoting food safety and health and protecting consumers from the risks of food fraud. This is achieved through strengthening cooperation with various stakeholders and developing food control systems. The conference provides a valuable platform for dialogue for all food sector stakeholders in the GCC countries to discuss global food fraud challenges, exchange best practices to protect consumers and establishments from falling victim to it and reduce its spread. It also offers an ideal opportunity to identify and effectively combat fraudulent practices, exchange expertise, and foster cooperation among participants.”

In addition to the conference, ADAFSA is organising an exhibition to showcase the latest technologies used in detecting food fraud. ADAFSA experts will present several papers and presentations on its efforts in combating food fraud.

ADAFSA is committed to supporting efforts to combat food fraud by participating in relevant global events, intensifying its inspection efforts on imported food products entering the emirate through its ports and points of sale, and educating consumers on how to identify, deal with and report food fraud practices. This is in line with its overall efforts to maintain food safety, increase consumer confidence in the safety of the food chain and achieve global leadership in food security.