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Kerala’s ‘Eat Right App’ to help people eat at hygienic places

July 11, 2023 03:26 pm | Updated 05:03 pm IST

The Eat Right App is designed to be a beacon of food safety, guiding residents and visitors alike to places where they can dine with complete confidence.

Kerala’s ‘Eat Right App’ is designed to maintain food safety. Photo Credit: Government of Kerala

Kerala’s Department of Food Safety made a significant declaration to reaffirm its commitment to maintaining food safety on June 7, on the occasion of World Food Safety Day. Notably, Kerala has emerged as the top-ranking state for maintaining the highest standards in food safety, closely followed by Punjab and Tamil Nadu.

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The Eat Right App is designed to be a beacon of food safety, guiding residents and visitors alike to places where they can dine with complete confidence. By installing the app, users gain access to a comprehensive list of bakeries and restaurants, each of which has been meticulously vetted for adherence to food safety standards.

The concept of involving the public in ensuring food safety is not uncommon. However, it is the first time any Indian State has taken an initiative of this kind, one that might be expanded across the country if it is found effective in Kerala.

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For any structure to be successful, it should reach the common man and ensure its utility is the maximum. It is the democratic participation that needs to be consolidated in this case. That means, the maximum number of citizens should use this application, and report the incidence however minor or major it is through the complaint mechanism in the app, and that response will gain momentum. It will be inspiring to see how the people and the government do operate for the common good. The public’s willingness to actively participate and the government’s commitment to observing and implementing food safety regulations are both necessary for success.

Through this app, the food safety department encourages users to report any concerns they may encounter while eating out. Each complaint will be treated with utmost seriousness and assured timely actions to rectify the situation and prevent a recurrence. Safe and healthy food is a fundamental right for all individuals. Equally important is the responsibility of those who serve food to uphold these standards. 

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The app lists organisations that have voluntarily come forward for the rating process, but to make the rating system more effective and reliable, it is crucial to ensure that all registered restaurants come under the purview of the app’s rating process. Consumers can make more informed decisions when choosing where to dine by referring to the app’s ratings, knowing that they cover a comprehensive set of establishments and eventually, it could incentivise the entire industry to raise standards and prioritise food safety.

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Clearly, collective effort can help identify potential risks and address them promptly, reducing the chances of food-borne illnesses and improving consumer trust in food. So far, only a few thousand people have utilised the app, but to maximise impact, all citizens should start using the app without delay.

The Eat Right App will allow people to embrace a future where good food is not only a privilege but also a fundamental right. Together, it is possible to cultivate a culture of democracy in food security, ensuring the well-being of every individual in the community.

(The author is an assistant professor, Verghese Kurien Institute of Dairy and Food Technology, Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Mannuthy, Thrissur)

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