Food safety, which is an integral part of food security, is essential for protecting consumers from the hazards of foodborne illnesses that may be introduced at different stages of the food value chain starting right from production and all the way to retail and food preparation. Applying Good Agriculture Practices (GAP) contribute towards sustainable agriculture and rural development and to meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable development that were adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015. The SDGs promotes a good environmental stewardship by emphasizing on the sustainable use of natural resources while enhancing livelihoods through better access to water and energy services, health, education, gender equality and higher income, and reduction in poverty and food insecurity.
Nowadays, most global agro-food industries and supply chains chose to adhere to specific food safety standards, both public and private, from seed and agricultural production to food processing and distribution. This is particularly important for the export of fruit and vegetable produces due to the ease with which they are often contaminated. GAP standards are not mandated by law and as such are adopted on a ‘voluntary’ basis though in reality they have become de facto requirements for product competitiveness to access international markets.