How to Ensure Food Safety in the Global E-Commerce Market?

Food and Beverages | Monday, October 12, 2020

Around 80 percent of the food that is consumed in developed countries are grown and manufactured in developing countries.

Fremont, CA: In the U.S., over 50 percent of fresh fruit, 30 percent of green vegetables, around 95 percent of seafood, and more than 90 percent of spices consumed by the people are imported, mostly from the developing countries. The delivery of food is being revolutionized; it is now delivered more efficiently through e-commerce (EC), online shopping, or home delivery. An innovative digital channel EC adopted by the World Trade Organization in 1998 markets food that has enhanced the last mile of delivery to the consumers. EC offers excellent choices and convenience, as well as access to food products that the consumers were unable to access through traditional trade.

EC is also recommended for a highly fragmented food supply chain as it has the potential to bring tremendous opportunities, mainly focusing on the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), by directly linking them with agricultural input markets and consumers.  Significant growth in the EC of food has been noticed, including perishable foods. EC has the ability to increase the farm gate price by 20-30 percent because of the fewer number of steps between SMEs and consumers. Additionally, EC can connect SMEs to the global market directly, enabling them to extend their sales beyond their limited geographic boundaries.

EC is also cheaper compared to the price on the restaurant's menu. Hence, ordering online has become a convenient way for people of all ages, especially millennials, to get their meals around the globe. The money spent on online food delivery was estimated at $82 billion in 2018 and is predicted to reach $365 billion by 2030.

EC can also present remarkable food safety risks and challenges. The responsibility of securing food safety must be divided equally by the public authorities, consumers, and the food industry. Steps have to be taken by the international and local food safety authorities and trade organizations to focus on the safety issues involved in the changing world of food production and delivery. The initiative must be taken by focusing on the food safety issues prevalent in the changing world of food production and delivery.

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