Food safety

The Five Keys to Safer Food Programme

As part of its global strategy to decrease the burden of foodborne diseases, WHO identified the need to communicate simple global health messages based on scientific evidence to train all types of food handlers, including consumers.

The Five Keys to Safer Food explain the basic principles that each individual should know all over the world to prevent foodborne diseases. Over 100 countries have reported using the Five Keys to Safer Food. As a result, thousands of food handlers, including consumers, are empowered to prevent foodborne diseases, make safe and informed choices and have a voice to push for a safer food supply.

To ensure the same understanding in practice along the full chain - from farm to table – WHO has developed additional Five Keys materials directed to rural people who grow fruits, vegetables and fish for their own use or for sale on local markets. WHO’s objective is to target those who usually do not have access to food safety education despite the important role they have in producing safe food for their community.

Key documents

Five keys to safer aquaculture products to protect public health

The training manual piloted in Viet Nam, Lao People's Democratic Republic and India will be available in March 2015.

To reproduce or adapt the poster and other materials, or to download the videos, contact directly Françoise Fontannaz at

Dr Margaret Chan

"Sometimes very simple messages and measures can have a big impact on health protection. These Five Keys to Safer Food have already contributed to the prevention of foodborne illness and deserve to be communicated more widely."

Margaret Chan, Director-General