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U.S. Codex News—Friday, June 15, 2012

A summary of recent and upcoming events published biweekly; direct inquiries to USCodex@fsis.usda.gov

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Upcoming Meetings

Executive Committee (CCEXEC) will meet in Rome, Italy, June 26-29, to conduct the critical review of proposed standards and related texts to be submitted to the Codex Alimentarius Commission. Also on the agenda is continued implementation of the current Strategic Plan and development of a new Strategic Plan for 2014-2019. The United States is a member of this Committee.

Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) will meet in Rome, Italy, July 2-7, 2012, and the core of the agenda is consideration of proposed amendments to the Procedural Manual, the adoption of 23 new or revised standards (or groups of standards) proposed by 12 committees (along with the revocation of existing standards that are being superseded by any newly adopted standards), and the consideration of proposals for new work or the discontinuation of work proposed by committees.

Agendas for the both committees are available on line at: http://www.codexalimentarius.org/meetings-reports/en/, and this site features links to the relevant documents that will be under consideration by the Executive Committee and the Codex Commission.

Recent Outreach

Committee for Latin America & Caribbean (CCLAC): A group of 18 officials who work on Codex issues from Costa Rica as well as from 10 Caribbean countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, and Trinidad & Tobago) participated in a Codex SPS Workshop, on June 11-12, in San Jose, Costa Rica. The program was organized by the U.S. Codex Office, in conjunction with the U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service. The purpose of the program was to provide advice for strengthening Codex programs in their own countries as well as for enhancing Caribbean participation in Codex meetings.

Electronic Working Groups (eWG)

Committee on Food Additives (CCFA) established a new eWG on prioritization criteria for the re-evaluation of food additives by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA). The eWG plans to (1) compile information from members and other organizations, including from the industry producing food additives, on the detailed list of the 107 food colors evaluated by JECFA since 1956; and (2) establish a prioritized list of food colors based on the prioritization tool. Canada will lead this eWG. Observers interested in participating in this eWG should provide the name(s), official title, and email address of their representative(s) to Dr. Madeline Weld (madeline.weld@hc-sc.gc.ca) with a copy to the Canadian Codex contact point at Codex_Canada@hc-sc.gc.ca by July 6, 2012. Parties in the United States that are interested in contributing to the U.S. participation in this eWG should contact the U.S. Codex Office (USCodex@fsis.usda.gov).

Committee on Food Hygiene (CCFH): The United States is leading an eWG on the revision of the Codex of Practice for Spices and Dried Aromatic Plants (CAC/RPC 42-1995). Parties interested in participating should forward contact information to Jenny Scott, Senior Adviser, Office of Food Safety, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (Jenny.Scott@fda.hhs.gov) and to Jane Van Doren, Interdisciplinary Scientist, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (jane.vandoren@fda.hhs.gov) by June 29, 2012.

Comments Requested

Committee on Food Hygiene (CCFH): The United States is leading a working group on the establishment of CCFH work priorities, and has invited member governments to propose new work for consideration by the working group, including the possible revision and/or revocation of existing codes of practice. Comments should be sent to Jenny Scott, Senior Adviser, Office of Food Safety, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (jenny.scott@fda.hhs.gov), and to Barbara McNiff, Senior Advisor, U.S. Codex Office (Barbara.McNiff@fsis.usda.gov), with a copy to the Codex Secretariat (codex@fao.org) by September 7, 2012.

Other News

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) invite comments on a new paper: State of the art on the initiatives and activities relevant to risk assessment and risk management of nanotechnologies in the food and agriculture sectors. This document is available for review at:
http://www.fao.org/food/food-safety-quality/home-page/en/ (Under "News") and http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/templates/agns/pdf/topics/
FAO_WHO_Nano_Paper_Public_Review_20120608.pdf
(Direct link to the document).

Comments should be sent to Masami Takeuchi (Masami.Takeuchi@fao.org) with a copy to Mina Kojima (kojimam@who.int) by no later than November 30, 2012.

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Last Modified Sep 10, 2013