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Policy

From regulation to public health campaigns, the priorities of governments, industry, civil society groups and other stakeholders feed into the policies and programmes that influence eating habits in Asia.

APAC’s undernourishment reduction rate suggests most nations will miss UN’s 2030 zero hunger goal

Only two countries out of the 19 being monitored in Asia-Pacific will meet the UN’s second Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of achieving zero hunger by 2030 if prevalence of undernourishment...

India’s new functional food and supplements rules: The key requirements every firm needs to know

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued its long-awaited rules for functional foods and supplements – publishing a 79-page set of criteria on its website.

New India supplements and nutraceuticals rules receive backing of direct-selling industry

The Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA) has welcomed new rules for supplements and nutraceuticals announced by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), saying it is a crucial...

Rapid iron infusion trial to tackle widespread deficiency among children in Australia’s Northern Territory

A project in Australia’s Northern Territory is to trial giving anaemic children rapid iron infusions before they are discharged from hospital in an attempt to reduce the risk of ongoing...

China direct

Plans to audit 5,000 standards meets with Chinese media approval

A decision by Chinese authorities to tidy up its Byzantine regulatory systems will see the consolidation of nearly 5,000 food safety standards and the revision of 300 other national standards.

Japan scrambles to limit impact of bird flu outbreak

Japan has confirmed a third outbreak of avian flu in as many days, prompting the cull of thousands of farmed birds in the north of the country.

Australian livestock farmers advised to unite to develop exports

The key to growing Australia's export market is greater collaboration among farmers in its agri-sector, according to a report by leading researchers.

News in brief

Philippines’ proposed salt tax slammed by lawmakers

A Philippines law designed to tax each excess milligram of sodium relative to guidelines has met with strong opposition at committee stage after one representative remarked that such a levy...

Amnesty report fallout: Another blow for RSPO?

Amnesty International’s report is another dent in the reputation of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) as three of the suppliers on Wilmar's operations were RSPO-certified. 

Developing countries with high TB burden need ‘oral vaccine’ of a balanced diet

To ‘continue neglecting nutrition’ is incompatible with the World Health Organization’s goal of reducing tuberculosis (TB) by 90% by 2035, a leading academic from India has claimed.

CVD risks high among low income Pakistani adults on traditional diets: New research

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors including obesity and hypertension are highly prevalent among low income urban Pakistani adults – with those people following a traditional diet most at risk, a...

No quick fix for New Zealand earthquake recovery

Farmers impacted by the earthquake earlier this month in New Zealand have been warned that recovery is going to be a long-term process.

Malaysia offers to advise Japanese halal industry ahead of Olympics

Malaysia has offered to advise the Japanese halal industry, which its prime minister says holds great potential for Islamic products. 

News in brief

Illegal operation involved more than 100 customers - MPI

An illegal meat processing operation has been discovered by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) in New Zealand.

Australia

Brain’s salt addiction centre is an extension of opiate system

Australian scientists have identified the part of the brain responsible for sodium addiction, raising hopes that a drug could be developed to suppress salt cravings. 

Dateline Southeast Asia

Climate change could draw 2m more Filipinos into hunger

A further 2m Filipinos risk hunger at an annual cost of some PHP145bn (US$3bn) by 2050, though effective policymaking could reduce the impact.

Ifad chief visits Pakistan with commitment to rural poor

The president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development is visiting Pakistan this week to renew the UN agency’s commitment to alleviate rural poverty and boost food security in the...

Australia

Social media blurs lines between alcohol and sport, researchers claim

An Australian study into how alcohol companies use sport to sell their products via social media suggests that businesses go beyond simple promotion by encouraging their audiences to create and...

Nutrition and food firms urged to step up to the plate over UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

Nutrition has the power to make or break the vast majority of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – but not enough nutrition or food firms are pledging to help solve...

Guest article

The Palm Oil Diaries: My journey below the forest canopy of half-truths

Film maker Michael Dorgan went to the forests of Latin America and Africa to investigate palm oil production while observing a palm oil-rich diet and returned convinced only multi-stakeholder action...

South Asia radius

FSSAI doubles down on food safety with expert review of standards

India’s food regulator is in the process of setting up a panel to review the country’s safety standards in the context of global norms.

Buffalo fly control project launched in Australia

Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) is supporting a new research project aimed at controlling buffalo flies.

UAE orders withdrawal of further three ‘herbal supplements’

The UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention has banned a further three ‘herbal supplements’ and warned they could endanger the lives of patients.

Soapbox

China cross-border e-commerce: Posturing and a policy of appeasement

China will allow cross-border e-commerce (CBEC) trade to continue, after Beijing recently announced the extension of a grace period for the sale of foodstuffs through this channel that don’t comply...

How fruit's genes make everything seem peachy

Chinese scientists have uncovered how a peach appears “peachy” after identifying genes involved in 12 key qualities of the fruit, from hairiness of the skin to the tartness of the...

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