Abu-Ghazaleh and Obeidat discuss Challenges to Food and Drug Security in the Kingdom


AMMAN - HE Dr. Talal Abu-Ghazaleh, Chairman of Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Knowledge Forum (TAGKF), met with Dr. Hayel Obeidat, Director General of Jordan Food and Drug Administration (JFDA), and Dr. Hussam Akhou Zahiya, Chairman of the 3D Vision Company for Training and Consulting/Head of TAGKF’s Food and Drug Committee. The attendees discussed the importance of establishing the Food and Drug Committee stressing the pioneering role the JFDA plays in monitoring drug safety, food safety and quality.

Dr. Abu-Ghazaleh pointed out that the Committee should mainly focus on the importance of securing good quality and affordable medication, the importance of developing national industries, creating jobs in the food and pharmaceutical industries, promoting the use of modern knowledge technologies in this sector, and providing preventative measures to detect irregularities, and seeking to set up a system similar to the FDA model used in the United States.

He also referred to the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the Forum and Jordan Economic and Social Council to adopt all studies and recommendations developed by the Forum’s committees; he also noted that Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Knowledge Forum serves as an independent institution that proposes studies and recommendations in full independence and no one influences the course of their work.

Meanwhile, Dr. Obeidat underlined the heavy workloads and the crucial responsibility shouldered by the JFDA, referring to the increasing volume of food imports, especially after the Syrian refugee crisis and the subsequent risks it poses to the national economy and the changing consumption patterns in the society. He stressed the need to support the national industries.

Obeidat pointed out that the Food and Drug Administration plays a key role in detecting malpractices whether fraud or manipulation with food expiration dates, and in such cases the Administration opt to close offending institutions in addition to developing unpaid corrective plans to rectify their situation. 

For his part, Dr. Akhou Zahiya said that the pharmaceutical market in Jordan is facing major constant challenges due to the progress and development of the pharmaceutical industry in neighboring countries and attributed to competition among local companies in manufacturing traditional medicines.