[Federal Register: March 13, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 48)]
[Notices]               
[Page 10879-10880]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr13mr09-17]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

[Docket No. FSIS-2009-0004]

 
Codex Alimentarius Commission: Meeting of the Codex Committee on 
Food Labeling

AGENCY: Office of the Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, 
USDA.

ACTION: Notice of public meeting and request for comments.

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SUMMARY: The Office of the Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food 
Safety, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Food and Drug 
Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, are 
sponsoring a public meeting on April 7, 2009. The objective of the 
public meeting is to provide information and receive public comments on 
agenda items and draft United States positions that will be discussed 
at the 37th Session of the Codex Committee on Food Labeling (CCFL) of 
the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Codex), which will be held in 
Calgary, Canada, on May 4 to May 8, 2009. In addition, a Working Group 
on the Implementation of the World Health Organization (WHO) Global 
Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity, and Health will meet on May 2, 
2009. The Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety and FDA 
recognize the importance of providing interested parties the 
opportunity to obtain background information on the 37th Session of the 
CCFL and to address items on the agenda.

DATES: The public meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, April 7, 2009, from 
1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The public meeting will be held in Room 107A, Jamie Whitten 
Federal Building, 1200 Independence Ave., SW., Washington, DC 20250. 
Codex documents related to the 37th Session of the CCFL will be 
accessible via the World Wide Web at the following address: http://
www.codexalimentarius.net/current.asp.
    The U.S. Delegate to the CCFL, Dr. Barbara Schneeman, invites U.S. 
interested parties to submit their comments electronically to the 
following e-mail address: ccfl@fda.hhs.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE 37TH SESSION OF THE CCFL CONTACT: Dr. 
Michael Wehr, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, 5100 Paint 
Branch Parkway, College Park, MD 20740. Phone: (301) 436-1724, Fax:

[[Page 10880]]

(301) 436-2618, e-mail: michael.wehr@fda.hhs.gov

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE PUBLIC MEETING CONTACT: Paulo 
Almeida, U.S. Codex Office, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Room 
4861, South Building, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Washington, DC 
20250. Phone (202) 205-7760, Fax: (202) 720-3157.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The Codex Alimentarius (Codex) was established in 1963 by two 
United Nations organizations, the Food and Agriculture Organization and 
the WHO. Through adoption of food standards, codes of practice, and 
other guidelines developed by its committees, and by promoting their 
adoption and implementation by governments, Codex seeks to protect the 
health of consumers and ensure that fair practices are used in trade.
    The CCFL drafts provisions on labeling applicable to all foods; 
considers, amends if necessary, and endorses specific provisions on 
labeling of draft standards, codes of practice, and guidelines prepared 
by other Codex committees; studies specific labeling problems assigned 
to it by the Commission; and studies problems associated with the 
advertisement of food with particular reference to claims and 
misleading descriptions. The Committee is chaired by Canada.

Issues To Be Discussed at the Public Meeting

    The following items on the agenda for the 37th Session of the CCFL 
will be discussed during the public meeting:
     Matters Referred to the Committee from other Codex bodies;
     Consideration of Labeling Provisions in Draft Codex 
Standards;
     Implementation of the WHO Global Strategy on Diet, 
Physical Activity, and Health: (a) Proposed Draft Revision of the 
Guidelines on Nutrition Labeling Concerning the List of Nutrients that 
are Always Declared on a Voluntary or Mandatory Basis; (b) Discussion 
Paper on Issues Related to Mandatory Nutrition Labeling; (c) Proposed 
Draft Criteria and Principles for Legibility and Readability of 
Nutrition Labels; (d) Discussion Paper on Labeling Provisions Dealing 
with the Food Ingredients Identified in the Global Strategy on Diet, 
Physical Activity, and Health;
     Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labeling and 
Marketing of Organically Produced Foods: Annex 1: Inclusion of Ethylene 
for Other Products; (b) Deletion of Rotenone from Annex 2;
     Labeling of Foods and Food Ingredients Obtained through 
Certain Techniques of Genetic Modification and Genetic Engineering; (a) 
Draft Amendment to the General Standard for the Labeling of Prepackaged 
Foods: Definitions; (b) Proposed Draft Recommendations for the Labeling 
of Foods and Food Ingredients Obtained through Certain Techniques of 
Genetic Modification and Genetic Engineering;
     Editorial Amendments to Codex Texts on Food Labeling;
     Discussion Paper on the Need to Amend the General Standard 
for the Labeling of Prepackaged Foods in Line with the International 
Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML) Recommendations Regarding the 
Declaration of the Quantity of Product in Prepackages; and,
     Discussion Paper on Modified Standardized Common Names 
Each issue listed will be fully described in documents distributed, or 
to be distributed, by the Secretariat prior to the meeting. Members of 
the public may access or request copies of these documents (see 
ADDRESSES).

Public Meeting

    At the April 7, 2009, public meeting, draft U.S. positions on the 
agenda items will be described and discussed, and attendees will have 
the opportunity to pose questions and offer comments. Written comments 
may be offered at the meeting or sent to the U.S. Delegate to the CCFL, 
Dr. Barbara Schneeman (see ADDRESSES). Written comments should state 
that they relate to activities of the 37th Session of the CCFL.

Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy 
development is important. Consequently, in an effort to ensure that 
minorities, women, and persons with disabilities are aware of this 
notice, FSIS will announce it online through the FSIS Web page located 
at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations/2009_Notices_Index/. FSIS 
will also make copies of this Federal Register publication available 
through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide 
information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal 
Register notices, FSIS public meetings, and other types of information 
that could affect or would be of interest to constituents and 
stakeholders. The Update is communicated via Listserv, a free 
electronic mail subscription service for industry, trade groups, 
consumer interest groups, health professionals, and other individuals 
who have asked to be included. The Update is also available on the FSIS 
Web page. Through the Listserv and Web page, FSIS is able to provide 
information to a much broader and more diverse audience. In addition, 
FSIS offers an electronic mail subscription service which provides 
automatic and customized access to selected food safety news and 
information. This service is available at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/
news_and_events/email_subscription/. Options range from recalls to 
export information to regulations, directives and notices. Customers 
can add or delete subscriptions themselves, and have the option to 
password protect their accounts.

    Done at Washington, DC on: March 9, 2009.
Barbara McNiff,
Acting U.S. Manager for Codex Alimentarius.
[FR Doc. E9-5449 Filed 3-12-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P