The AFRAF Newsroom

Relevant and up-to-date coverage of AFRAF activities.

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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.

AFRAF Foundations

By applying our core values to all the work we do, we achieve our mission and realize our vision!





Core Values


A Strong Impetus for the Creation of AFRAF - Key Excerpts from the 2022-2036 Food Safety Strategy for Africa (FSSA)

"Unsafe food have huge public health and economic impacts for Africa. The most recent World Health Organization’s (WHO) Global Burden of Foodborne Diseases estimated that, in Africa, food safety hazards were responsible for approximately 137,000 deaths and about 91 million cases of acute foodborne illnesses on an annual basis, the highest estimates worldwide.

If not addressed, the public health and socio-economic costs of unsafe food can undermine the attainment of the goals set in the Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agriculture growth and Transformation and the African Continental free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Specifically, unsafe food will not only undermine the goal to triple intra-Africa trade in agricultural products and achievement of food security goals but it lead to lost opportunities in food trade gains due to Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) challenges. Hence, the African Union SPS Policy Framework and Annex VII of the Agreement establishing the AfCFTA are policy instruments endorsed recently to address SPS matters and pave way for smooth intraAfrica trading. The proposed Food Safety Strategy for Africa (FSSA) will help operationalize the AU SPS policy framework by providing a harmonized framework on how to address SPS issues related to food safety with the overall objective to protect consumers and at the same time facilitate trade."

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.

Collaborative Agenda

Shape an agenda of collaborative initiatives to contribute to the development of a path forward for African food regulatory harmonization and integration as part of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and to address common challenges faced by African food competent authorities and the food and agri-food production sector.

FSSA Commitments

Deliver on some of the commitments of the recently adopted Food Safety Strategy for Africa (FSSA), through supporting the operation of a science-based and efficient food regulatory environment in Africa leading to delivering “safer agrifood value chains across the continent, reduced foodborne disease burden in Africa, improved competitiveness of Africa’s food commodities for increased intra-African and global trade.

Effective Governance

Develop a foundation for the governance structure of the soon to be established African Food Safety Agency.

Our Proposed Strategic Themes / Objectives

Based on our Foundations, our strategic themes / objectives drive our activities to achieve relevant key results.


Building capacity through collaborative efforts in food risk analysis and food regulatory science; aligned with the directions set by the Food Safety Strategy for Africa (AFSS)

Risk Analysis Focus

Implementing changes in African food safety frameworks, towards the integration of preventive measures and the adoption of decision-making based on risk analysis.


Supporting the sustainable development of food and agrifood production, through a favorable and integrated food regulatory environment, grounded by convergent food regulatory decisions across the continent.

Stakeholder Engagement

Providing an accessible continental platform where food regulators are able to freely engage with other stakeholders, including the private sector, with the goal to improve African economies through effective food safety and nutrition management.