Within the framework of the HRD Project "Human resource development in the food sector through cooperation between Japan and ASEAN universities" funded and chaired by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, together with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam, with the coordination of the ASEAN Secretariat, Vietnam National University of Agriculture (VNUA) organized a training course on Food Analysis from April 5, 2022 to April 8, 2022. Due to the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic, the course was organized using a combination of online discussion via the zoom platform and face-to-face training at VNUA.

In the morning of April 5, 2022, the training course officially started, with the opening remarks delivered by Mrs. Mayu Nishikawa, Director of the Office of Policy and Standards Review, on behalf of the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries representing on the needs and importance of food quality assurance. Ms. Kie Inoue, project secretary, representing the ASEAN Secretariat, introduced the formation of the HRD project since 2014 and the training courses held at 10 ASEAN universities, in which VNUA was the representative from Vietnam. Following that, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Hoang Anh, on behalf of VNUA, gave a speech to share about the values and useful knowledge that the staff, lecturers, and students inside and outside VNUA obtained from the training programs from 2015 to 2021. Especially, the first Food Analysis course was successfully held in 2019 at VNUA with the participation of 85 trainees.

The opening of the training course: Food Analysis 2022
Mrs. Kie Inoue, ASEAN Secretariat presents overview of HRD project

To ensure safety in epidemic prevention, the 2022 Food Analysis training course was organized in both online and face-to-face modes. The theoretical course was held online from April 5, 2022 to the end of the morning of April 7, 2022, with the participation of 113 trainees from 20 agencies, mainly lecturers, researchers, technicians, and students of VNUA and other universities, research institutes, state management agencies, enterprises of Vietnam, where food training, production, analysis, inspection and quality control activities were taking place. During the course, the trainees were introduced to the knowledge and updated information presented by speakers and lecturers from the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; Food and Agricultural Materials Evaluation Center; Japan Association for Biometrics and Analysis; Ritsumeikan University, ISO/IEC 17025 auditors, Japanese food businesses. The topics presented included:

1. General introduction to Japanese Agriculture Standard (JAS);

2. Functional foods – Mushrooms and ornithine;

3. Sample analysis method according to Japanese Agricultural Standard;

4. Standards in the Food Industry – Basics and Latest Trends;

5. Traditional Japanese medicine and some natural herbs;

6. ISO/IEC 17025 laboratory management system standard.

Mr. Yoshinao Ito (FAMIC) introduces Japanese Agriculture Standard – JAS

During the two and a half days, despite being held online, the course took place with enthusiasm, seriousness and quality. The teaching topics attracted the attention of the majority of trainees. At 2pm on April 7, 2022, the Organizing Committee held the closing ceremony of the theory course with the participation of Mr. Hiroaki Kinoshita, HRD Project Coordinator from Japan, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Thi Bich Thuy, project coordinator from VNUA, MSc. Nguyen Thi Thu Nga, lecturer of the Faculty of Food Science and Technology (VNUA), representative of the Organizing Committee of the course, thanked the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the ASEAN Secretariat, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam, and VNUA’s Presidency Board for creating favorable conditions and supporting the course actively so that the course was successfully organized as planned.

Mr. Hiroaki Kinoshita, HRD Japanese Coordinator delivers closing remarks
The closing ceremony

After the closing ceremony was the continuation of the intensive training program for 20 trainees, who were lecturers, researchers, and technicians from the Faculty of Food Science and Technology, Faculty of Agronomy, Faculty of Biotechnology, Center Laboratory of Faculty of Animal Science, Green Growth Research Institute, Plant Research and Development Institute, Jamitech VNUA Agricultural-Environment Biotechnology Joint Stock Company from VNUA. In the afternoon of April 7, 2022, 20 trainees were divided into 4 groups, discussed and presented with the speakers' guidance on the topic of laboratory assessment and self-assessment in accordance with ISO/IEC 17025 laboratory management system standard. The seminar was lively and exciting, not only helping participants to obtain a deeper understanding of the theoretical lessons, but also offering them an opportunity to analyze and evaluate the current situation of the Vietnamese laboratory, as a basis for future improvements.

On April 8, 2022, the course was held at the ISO standard Central Laboratory of the Faculty of Food Science and Technology. Trung Son Scientific Instrument Company, a unit selected and entrusted by the Japanese partner, gave instructions on practical contents on the maintenance of HPLC system, one of the most modern and specialized analytical equipment for food analysis. Students raised concerns about problems that might occur during operation as well as how to fix and maintain the HPLC system to ensure the reliability and accuracy of the analytical results on the HPLC system.

Training on maintenance of HPLC system at the lab

With valuable and useful professional knowledge shared, trainees participating in the training course would be strengthened with theoretical knowledge and practical skills in advanced food analysis, thereby, making practical contributions to the assessment and control of food safety and quality in Vietnam and in the region. The training course really made a positive contribution to human resource training in the food sector in Vietnam, and, at the same time, promoted strong cooperation in agriculture and food industry between Japan and Vietnam.

Faculty of Food Science and Technology