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Alumnus Kuen-yuh Wu Speaks at NTHU’s Food Safety Forum
On May 3rd Kuen-yuh Wu of the Legislative Yuan delivered a talk at NTHU’s Food Safety Forum. A large audience was on hand to hear Wu’s discussion on food safety and risk assessment of hazardous substances in food products.
 
In recent years repeated food scare incidents have shaken the public’s confidence in the government’s ability to ensure food safety. Amongst the dangerous substances discovered in commercial food products were melamine in 2008, plasticizers in 2011, toxic starch in 2013, and adulterated cooking oil in 2014. A graduate of the Department of Chemical Engineering, Legislator Wu teaches at the College of Public Health at National Taiwan University and serves as the president of the Taiwan Society for Risk Analysis. Presenting complex issues in a form readily understandable to the general public, Legislator Wu discussed such topics as food additives; adulterated and counterfeit food products produced by unscrupulous operators; how they avoid detection; food containers; health risks related to processed meats; drinking water; and carcinogens in food products.
 
Legislator Wu noted that just because a certain food product contains a potentially harmful substance doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t eat it, and that it’s basically impossible to completely avoid every hazardous substance. Instead, what’s most important is to conduct an objective, science-based risk assessment. Legislator Wu advocates a food safety strategy which covers all bases, including origin, manufacture, handling, storage, transportation, sale, consumption, and even excretion.
 
This was the first NTHU Food Safety Forum. The series consisted of eight lectures presented over a period of two weeks. During the first week Assistant Professor Ching-Fu Lin of the Institute of Law for Science and Technology discussed food safety standards and international trade issues; Associate Professor Chao-Min Cheng of the Institute of Nano Engineering and Micro Systems shared his experience in developing food safety testing strips; Shu-chen Tsai, the Acting Director of Office of Food Safety, Executive Yuan, discussed food safety policies from the government’s point of view; and Dr. Chii-cherng Liao, Director-General of Food Industry Research and Development Institute, presented the efforts being made by food manufacturers to improve food safety. During the second week talks were given by Dr. Chong-hai Yan of the Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Prof. Ding-tzann Lii of the Institute of Sociology, and Assistant Prof. Meng-chi Lien of the Institute of Law for Science and Technology. The Forum topics were rich and diverse, and the forum had attracted large audience from Hsinchu area.
 
NTHU Alumnus, Legislator Kuen-yuh Wu delivering his talk at NTHU’s Food Safety Forum.

NTHU Alumnus, Legislator Kuen-yuh Wu delivering his talk at NTHU’s Food Safety Forum.

Legislator Wu’s talk was attended by nearly 100 interested listeners from NTHU and the general public.

Legislator Wu’s talk was attended by nearly 100 interested listeners from NTHU and the general public.

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