Impact of Water Use and Reuse in Food Production and Processing on Food Safety at the Consumer Phase: Focus on the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Products Sector

Webinar Description

Organized by: Water Safety and Quality PDG, International Food Protection Issues PDG, Fruits and Vegetables Safety Quality PDG

Webinar Abstract:

The use of clean water in growing, handling and processing of fruits and vegetables is essential to achieve consumer safe food products.

Various types of hazards are potentially introduced through water use and reuse. These need to be identified and, where necessary, risks at the consumer phase have to be reduced to acceptable levels through adequate treatment/technical intervention.

Codex Alimentarius is developing risk management guidance related to use and reuse of water in production and processing for different food product sectors. The Joint Expert Meeting in Microbiological Risk Assessment (JEMRA), working under auspices of FAO and WHO, provides input into this.

The JEMRA report for fresh fruits and vegetables has been published. It proposes a new framework for science- and risk-based decision-making on fit-for-purpose water use and reuse. The use of the framework is illustrated with practical pre- and postharvest interventions to mitigate food safety risks at the consumer phase.

Learning Objectives:

The participants will learn about the following aspects of water reuse in the fruits and vegetables sector:

The efforts of JEMRA and Codex to develop a risk- and science-based framework to manage the safe use and reuse of water in the production and processing of fresh fruits and vegetables following a "fit-for-purpose" approach.

The microbiological hazards potentially associated with water (re-)use in production and processing, and interventions that may help mitigate food safety risks at the consumer stage.

Case-studies from the JEMRA report that illustrate practical examples of current water (re-)use in the fresh fruits and vegetables sector in different parts of the world

The outcomes of field testing the proposed framework by stakeholders (competent authorities and farmers/food industry).

Professional Development Groups

  • Fruit and Vegetable Safety and Quality Professional Development Group
  • International Food Protection Issues Professional Development Group
  • Water Safety and Quality Professional Development Group


  • Zhou Kang, Presenter FAO, Italy
  • Anna Allende, Presenter CEBAS-CSIC, Spain
  • Rob de Jonge, Presenter National Institute of Public Health, The Netherlands
  • Elisabetta Lambertini, Presenter GAIN, USA
  • Leon Gorris, Moderator Food Safety Futures, The Netherlands