U.S. Codex News—Friday, May 18, 2012
A summary of recent and upcoming events published biweekly; direct inquiries to USCodex@fsis.usda.gov
Recent Committee Meetings
Committee on Food Labeling (CCFL) held its 40th Session on May 15-18, in Ottawa, Canada, with approximately 165 representatives from 61 countries.
Advancing to the Commission for adoption as revisions (1 &2) to the Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labeling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods:
- Use of ethylene: (a) for ripening fruit, (b) as a flowering agent for pineapples, and (c) for degreening citrus; and
- Inclusion of spinosad, copper octanoate, potassium bicarbonate, and
- Requirements for mandatory nutrition labeling, also for the revision of Guidelines for Nutrition Labelling (CAC/GL 2-1985).
- Establishing electronic Working Group (eWG), co-chaired by United States and Cameroon, to continue work on the use of ethylene for sprout inhibition in onions and potatoes for the proposed revision of Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labeling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods.
- Endorsing the following recommendations from the Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) for adoption by the Commission of:
- Additional conditions for nutrient content claims and comparative claims for the revision of the Guidelines for Use of Nutrition and Health Claims (CAC/GL 23-1997), and
- Definition for nutrient reference values as proposed for the revision of the Guidelines for Nutrition Labelling (CAC/GL 2-1985).
- Endorsing the labeling provisions for regional standards for Harissa and Halwa Tehenia, proposed by the Committee on the Near East (CCNEA) and adopted by the Commission in 2011, pending endorsement by CCFL of these labeling provisions.
- Returning work to the eWG, chaired by the European Union, to continue efforts on organic aquaculture (CX/FL 12/40/11); discontinuing work on modified standardized common names for purpose of nutritional modification.
Committee on Residues of Veterinary Drugs in Foods (CCRVDF) held its 20th session, May 7-11, in Suan Juan, Puerto Rico, with 177 delegates from 47 countries, one regional organization, and 10 observer organizations. A detailed Delegate's Report is published at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/international-affairs/us-codex-alimentarius/recent-delegation-reports/delegate-report-20th-session-ccrvdf/ct_index.
- Recommending to the Commission the adoption of maximum residues limits (MRLs) of narasin in cattle tissue; MRLs for amoxicillin in cattle, sheep and pig tissues; and the proposed draft sampling plan for residue control for aquatic animal products and derived edible products of aquatic origin.
- Holding proposed MRLs for apramycin and monepantel to allow for further evaluation by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA).
- Establishing a physical working group, led by Canada, to continue work on extrapolation of data for the development of MRLs.
- Continuing the electronic working groups (eWGs) to develop guidances for honey and for multi-residue analytical methods, and to develop risk management advice for veterinary drugs for which JECFA could not recommend Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) values or MRLs due to specific human health concerns. The honey eWG will be led by the United Kingdom, and the multi-residue analytical methods eWG will be co-chaired by the United Kingdom and Canada.
- Including gentian violet, lasalocid, phenylpyrazole, emamcetin benzoate, derquantel, monepantel, and apramycin on the priority list for JECFA evaluation. The Committee was sharply divided by the proposal to include zilpaterol on the JECFA priority list, because this compound is a beta-agonist, and the EU opposes the development of MRLs for beta-agonists in general, regardless of JECFA evaluation.
- Sending to the Commission a proposal to form a new electronic Working Group (eWG) to further develop risk management advice for drugs for which JECFA could not recommend ADI and/or MRLs due to specific human health concerns.
The next session is tentatively scheduled for August 2013.
Electronic Working Groups
Committee on Food Additives (CCFA) has established two eWGs:
- On the alignment of food additive provisions of commodity standards with the relevant provision of the General Standard on Food Additives (GSFA), for the purpose of making the GSFA the single Codex reference for food additives, while ensuring that food additives are technologically justified and safe for use. Parties interested in contributing to the U.S. participation in this eWG should contact the U.S. Codex Office (USCodex@fsis.usda.gov). Australia is leading this eWG, so other Codex Members and Observers interested in participating in this eWG to provide the name(s), official title and e-mail address of their representatives to the Australian Codex Contact Point (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 20 June 2012.
- To consider proposals for changes or additions to the International Numbering System (INS). Parties interested in contributing to the U.S. participation in this eWG should contact the U.S. Codex Office (USCodex@fsis.usda.gov). Iran is leading this eWG, so other Codex Members and Observers interested in participating should send contact information to the coordinator, Dr. Behzad Marandi ( email@example.com) by June 15, 2012.
Committee on Europe (CCEURO) has established an eWG to develop a proposed draft regional standard for Ayran (a fermented yogurt-based beverage). The eWG is led by Turkey. CCEURO Member countries and Codex observer organizations interested in participating should contact the Codex Contact Point for Turkey (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org).
Physical Working Groups
Committee on Import & Export Inspection & Certification Systems (CCFICS) invites Codex Members and Observers to participate in a meeting in Grange, Ireland, July 9-12, 2012, to consider Section 4 of the Proposed Draft Principles and Guidelines for National Food Control Systems. Australia and the European Union will co-chair this meeting. Parties interested in participating should contact Ann Backhouse, Australian Secretariat (email@example.com) and Bernadette Klink-Khachan, European Union Codex Contact Point (firstname.lastname@example.org) by May 22, 2012.