Food borne bacteria, viruses and chemical residues namely mycotoxins, pesticides and veterinary drugs residues and toxic metals are major biotic constraints to food security causing losses in crop yield, human productivity (40%) and in export, and lowered performance of animal husbandry in addition to the direct human health impacts of increased incidence of cancers, growth stunting in children, reduced life expectancy and death. Other threats, such as salmonellosis, entero-haemorrhagic diseases, hepatitis A, cholera, heavy metal poisoning, the threat of antibiotic resistance arising from improper use of veterinary drugs, and chronic pesticide and industrial chemical residue exposure need urgent attention.
Unsafe food being the cause of over 200 diseases is singularly the biggest killer of human beings and needs to be kept in check. These pervasive diseases arising from the contamination of foods and feeds by these major food contaminants and the anticipated higher toxicity of the cocktails of food toxicants; which affects fetuses, pregnant women and children at disproportionally high rates can only be revealed and mitigated by an innovative interdisciplinary workforce. Therefore, in response to the AAU-AFD partner call, four ACEs together with other health related ACEs and our non-ACE industry partners came together to establish the West African Food Safety Network (WAFOSAN) in order to address the huge food safety burden in Africa.
WAFOSAN NETWORK PARTNERS
- Africa Centre of Excellence for Mycotoxin and Food Safety (ACEMFS)
- West African Centre of Excellence for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogen (WACCBIP)
- Africa Centre of Excellence for the Prevention and Control of Communicable Diseases (CEA-PCMT)
- Africa Centre of Excellence in Public Health and Toxicological Research (ACE-PUTOR)