Mercabarna hosted the 2nd Congress for Official Food Controls in Wholesale Markets, organised by the Barcelona Healthcare Consortium and Public Health Agency on 22 and 23 October. Around twenty health inspectors from different Spanish wholesale markets came to share experiences of inspecting fresh food produce at wholesale markets. “It was a wonderfully enriching Congress,” said Montserrat Ramoneda, head of the Public Health Agency’s Health Inspection of Central Markets Service. “We discussed traceability and labelling, fishery products conservation, cold treatment applications in the sale of fresh produce and the new health regulations, among other topics. We also exchanged viewpoints about the common problems we find in our day-to-day work.”
As well as the round-table discussions, the Congress featured a number of conferences, with speeches by Joaquim Ros, Mercabarna’s director for Markets and Promotion; Lluís Alberich, head of Mercabarna’s Industrial and Services division; Àngels Videla, technical manager of the fishery firm Grupo Videla, and Joan Folch, quality manager at the fruit and vegetable company Morales e Hijos. The health inspectors also visited the Fish Central Market, the Central Fruit and Vegetable Market and the Green Point, a facility which Ms Ramoneda remarked had made a big impact on attendees “as waste management is one of the major challenges still to be addressed in large wholesale markets and there is a lot Mercabarna can teach in this field”.