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Relevant and up-to-date coverage of AFRAF activities.
Inaugural Meeting of the African Food Regulatory Authorities Forum (AFRAF) at The St. Regis Almasa Hotel, New Administrative Capital, Cairo, Egypt from 11-13 October 2023
Inaugural Meeting of the African Food Regulatory Authorities Forum (AFRAF) Venue: The St. Regis Almasa Hotel, New Administrative Capital, Cairo, Egypt from […]
What is AFRAF?
The African Food Regulatory Authorities Forum (AFRAF) is a forum gathering Representatives of African Food Competent Authorities regulating food, at the heads of Authority Level, created by the African Union Commission, in partnership with the National Food Safety Authority of Egypt (NFSA), various food regulatory competent authorities in Africa and International Partners.
Recognizing that collaboration between food competent authorities is imperative to address an increasingly complex and interdependent health, food production and food trade environment, AFRAF aims to facilitate engagement, discussions, experience sharing and the development of a collaborative agendas amongst leaders of African food regulatory authorities.
If agreed by African food competent authorities and partner organization, this Forum aims to be set as a Biennial Event, convened to serve as a mechanism of collaboration and information exchange between food regulators in Africa and internationally.
AFRAF membership consists of representation by up to 2 senior officials from each African country. Where more than one government department or agency are sharing food safety and quality regulatory responsibilities, representation will be sought from the lead agency or the two most relevant departments and agencies, with a maximum of 2 representatives per country.
Our Raison D'Être
The justification for why we exist…
Food safety and nutrition are key determinants of health and human development. Food regulatory decisions have far-reaching implications on the health, agriculture and trade agendas for any given country, both domestically and at the international level.
Africa’s contribution to the global food and agrifood supply is increasingly important, considering the important water and land resources afforded by the continent. African countries are demonstrating increasing commitment to modernizing and further enhancing their agricultural output and their food and agrifood production, with opportunities of development that can have important positive impacts on the economies of African countries and the continent.
Producing safe and nutritious food for Africa’s population and increasing intra-regional trade of food and agrifood products within the African continent were also identified as some of the objectives pursued by the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) launched in 2021.
In recent years, African leaders have prioritized actions in relation to food safety and SPS matters in an effort to address some of the public health and economic challenges. Several discussions have taken place on the possibility of establishing a unified food safety agency for the continent, sharing a common SPS policy framework and with the dual objectives of harmonizing SPS measures and supporting a common approach to food safety capacity building across the African continent (AUC, 2019; WTO, 2019).
Many changes are being witnessed in the African food safety regulatory context, with the development of new food competent authorities and agencies entrusted with the overall food safety regulatory mandate, such as the creation of the Food Safety and Quality Authority of the Gambia, the National Food Safety Agency of the Arab Republic of Egypt (NFSA) and similar agencies established in Nigeria, Ghana, and Mauritania.
These changes, along with efforts of coordination and food regulatory convergence led by African Regional Economic Communities (RECs), such as ECOWAS and EAC, would benefit from the creation of a favorable collaborative environment between African food regulators, through the development of an African Food Regulatory Authorities Forum (AFRAF), under the leadership of the African Union Commission, its specialized departments and in partnership with the RECs.
This direction is further supported by the outputs of 36th Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government, held on 18-19 February 2023 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia identifying the priority of the year as being “Accelerating the Implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area” and highlighting the importance of the food and agrifood sector in the intra-continental trade.
The potential for growth for this segment of intra-continental trade is estimated to be exponential and needs to be further driven by enhanced alignment of African food regulatory frameworks, which requires the development of a relevant forum for dialogue and collaboration between African Food Regulators.
By applying our core values to all the work we do, we achieve our mission and realize our vision!
What We Do
AFRAF serves as a mechanism of collaboration and information exchange on current challenges and priorities of food safety and nutrition regulatory development in the African continent, between food regulators in Africa and internationally.
Our Proposed Strategic Themes / Objectives
Based on our Foundations, our strategic themes / objectives drive our activities to achieve relevant key results.