The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) recently supported and co-organized a symposium on food safety, zoonoses and EcoHealth in Thailand.
The fourth Food Safety and Zoonoses Symposium for Asia Pacific, which also included the second Regional EcoHealth Symposium, held 3-5 August 2015 in Chiang Mai, brought together experts to share knowledge and information on food safety and zoonoses and to provide a platform for recent EcoHealth research.
This year’s theme was ‘Professional learning community for human–animal–environmental health’.
The symposium focused on several important themes including assessment of biological and chemical risks in food system, antimicrobial resistance in humans and animals, emergence of zoonoses and vector-borne diseases, innovation in surveillance and epidemiological tools, veterinary and public health capacity building and the EcoHealth-One Health approach.
At the symposium, ILRI scientists Fred Unger, Hung Nguyen and Delia Grace (online) gave keynote presentations on food safety, zoonoses and EcoHealth. Together with other ILRI researchers, they also reviewed submitted abstracts, full papers, presentations and posters and facilitated event sessions.
In addition, Dang Xuan Sinh and Duong Van Nhiem, regional researchers from Vietnam working on ‘PigRisk’, an on-going ILRI project under the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health (A4NH) and funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), presented findings from their research on residues in pork in wet markets and endoparasites in pigs raised in smallholder farms, respectively.
Chayanee Jenpanich, an ILRI-co-funded MSc student at the Veterinary Public Health Center for Asia Pacific (VPHCAP), also presented her thesis.
The conference provided an opportunity for networking with researchers, some of whom were partners from the recently concluded EcoZD project, an IDRC-funded ILRI project which promoted EcoHealth research in Asia through capacity building and case studies. The Vet Faculty of CMU was the key project partner for Thailand, and a One Health-Eco Health Resource Center was established at CMU as a major project output.
The symposium organizers included VPHCAP at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of CMU, University of Minnesota, Free University Berlin and Companion Approach for Cross-sectoral Collaboration in Health Risks Management in Southeast Asia (ComAcross). As a co-organizer since 2013 and building up on an existing collaboration, ILRI specifically supported a session on food safety, as well as the regional symposium on EcoHealth.
In side discussions with representatives from University of Minnesota and VPHCAP, plans for joint activities for the upcoming Global Health Institute (GHI) in February 2016 were brainstormed.
Learn more about One Health, a multidisciplinary approach to attain optimal health for people, domestic animals, wildlife and the environment with similarities to EcoHealth.
For further information on One Health/EcoHealth, go to AgHealth, a blog that focuses on agriculture-associated diseases.