U.S. Codex News
in brief —
Friday, December 17, 2010
Veterinary Drugs: The first of three planned "Friends of the Chair" meetings to try
to resolve the issues blocking adoption of an MRL for ractopamine was held December 9-10 in Mexico City.
Members of the group presented their current positions and discussed rationales for those positions as well
as possible compromise positions.
Along with the United States, the meeting was attended by Norway, Mexico, Japan, Ghana, the European Union, China,
Brazil, Consumers International, and the International Federation for Animal Health. Tunisia and South Africa
were not present. The members were appointed at the last Codex Commission meeting. The Friends Committee
will next meet February 10-11 in Brussels.
Recent Outreach Events
A U.S. Codex Office representative met with officials from the Iraq Central Organization for Standardization and
Quality Control on December 3 in Washington, DC. During the meeting, the U.S. Codex Office gave a presentation
on the importance of the Codex Alimentarius Commission in protecting the health of consumers and ensuring fair
practices in the food trade on an international scale. The Iraqi officials are travelling to various cities
in the United States as part of a U.S. Standards Consultation Tour.
New Working Groups
Codex Committee on Residues of Veterinary Drugs in Food (CCRVDF): Participating
countries in Codex and observer organizations have been invited to join an electronic working group to
develop risk management recommendations for veterinary drugs for which no ADI (acceptable daily intake) and/or
MRL (maximum residue level) has been recommended by JECFA (Joint Expert Consultation on Food Additives) due
to specific human health concerns. This eWG was established at the 19th Session of the CCRVDF (which met in
September 2010) and is being chaired by the European Union. The first draft of the risk management recommendations
document is scheduled to be circulated on March 1, 2011 to WG members for the first round of comments.
The target date for finishing the final draft of this document is December 1, 2011.
The U.S. will be a member of this WG.
Note: Three other eWGs for CCRVDF were previously established. For details, see our September 24 Codex News Update.
Codex Committee on Food Hygiene (CCFH): The United States and Canada will lead a
physical working group to draft an annex on melons for the Code of Hygienic Practice for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables.
An invitation to join the working group was circulated this week to all Codex members and international observers,
which plans to meet in Ottawa, Canada, June 7-9, 2011. The pWG was established at the 42nd Session of CCFH,
which concluded on December 3 in Kampala, Uganda.
New Documents for Comment
Codex Committee on Food Hygiene (CCFH): A circular letter (CL) requesting comments from
governments and interested international organizations was included with the Final Report of the 42nd Session of
CCFH, which met in Uganda earlier this month. The CL invites comments on Proposed Draft Guidelines on the
Application of General Principles of Food Hygiene to the Controls of Viruses in Food. The text of the Proposed
Draft Guidelines is contained in Annex IV, and is available on line at:
Coordinating Committee for Asia (CCAsia): Another CL was included with the Final Report of
the 17th Session of CCAsia, which met in Indonesia last month. The CL invites comments on the two draft regional
standards which the Committee recommended for adoption at the next session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission
(July 2011). The draft standards are for Edible Sago Flour (text in Appendix II of the Report) and for Chili Sauce
(Appendix III). A copy of the CL with these two draft standards is available at the same link (provided above)
to the Codex Alimentarius website.
February is the beginning of the high season in Codex with ten general subject and commodity committees meeting
between February 21 and May 13. The U.S. Codex Office has scheduled public meetings for five of these committees:
- Methods of Analysis (CCMAS), February 9 at FDA's Harvey Wiley Bldg., College Park, MD;
- Fats and Oils (CCFO), February 9, FDA, Harvey Wiley Bldg., College Park, MD;
- Pesticide Residues (CCPR), February 17, at EPA's Potomac Yard Bldg., Arlington, VA;
- Food Additives (CCFA), February 22, FDA, Harvey Wiley Bldg, College Park, MD; and
- Fish and Fishery Products (CCFFP), March 16, FDA, Harvey Wiley Bldg, College Park, MD.
For details, see our adjacent "Public Meetings" web page - link at upper right hand of this page or at:
The remaining two regional committees will have their biennial meetings in early 2011:
- Coordinating Committee for the Near East (CCNEA), January 25-29, in Tunisia.
- Coordinating Committee for Africa (CCAfrica), February 1-4, in Ghana.
Next Update: January 14, 2011
Best wishes to you for a happy holiday season and for a healthy and prosperous New Year.
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Last Modified: January 14, 2011