Establishment of the Indonesia Risk Assessment Center (INARAC)
Thursday, 20 November 2014
By: Nofita Nurbiyanti and Sunandar
The National Agency of Drug and Food Control (Badan Pengawas Obat dan Makanan/BPOM) on November 20, 2014, announced the establishment of Indonesia Risk Assessment Center (INARAC) and held a food safety exhibition in Kartika Chandra Hotel, Jakarta. INARAC is a scientific forum under the Food Intelligence Network (Jejaring Inteligen Pangan/JIP), a workgroup with competence in assessing the risks to food safety. The aim of INARAC is to facilitate pools of experts, baseline data collection, information sharing, and communication between risk assessors in ministries/institutions functioning as focal points for ASEAN Risk Assessment Center (ARAC).
The event was opened with remarks and declaration from Dr. Ir. Roy A. Sparringa, M.App.Sc as Head of BPOM. INARAC was then inaugurated by Indonesian Minister of Health, Prof. dr. NilaDjuwita F. Moeloek, Sp.M. The minister expressed her support and hopes that INARAC becomes a source for data and information on food-safety risk assessments for the development of future policies in Indonesia.
INARAC was formed because risk assessment on domestic and foreign products is an important tool for the protection of food safety, public health and food security in Indonesia. Risk assessment for food safety in Indonesia is conducted by a number of institutions facilitated by the Food Intelligence Network (JIP). The function of JIP is to collect, analyze and interpret food-safety data, such as food inspection and monitoring reports, food-poisoning cases, and contamination data.
JIP also serves to support the Indonesia Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (INRASFF) program. INRASFF is a program established by the Integrated Food Safety System (SKPT) in Indonesia since 2010. It is a strategic tool for post-market food monitoring which collects and analyzes data related to national food security issues. INRASFF gives downstream notifications of food safety issues to international food safety networks (ASEAN RASFF INFOSAN, Korea FDA, China FDA, US FDA, etc.) and has collaborated with ASEAN RASFF, EU RASFF and US FDA in its development process. INARAC was developed to support the collection of scientific data required by INRASFF.
The event was attended by various food safety institutions, including policy makers from various ministries, related agencies/institutions, universities, associations, professional associations and national media. Center for Indonesian Veterinary Analytical Studies (CIVAS) as an organization with a mission to provide alternative data and information on animal product safety also attended the event. CIVAS was represented by Ridvana Dwibawa, DVM, Sunandar, DVM and Nofita Nurbiyanti, BVM. CIVAS thoroughly welcomes and supports the establishment of INARAC.
Also in the event was symbolic presentation of awards for Elementary Schools participating in the “National Act on Healthy Snacks for School Children“ and “Food Safety Goes to Villages” awards for food safety cadres from various regions in Indonesia. Public awareness materials related to the awards given were also distributed to participants.