FISH AND FISHERY PRODUCTS
MILK AND MILK PRODUCTS
NUTRITION AND FOODS FOR SPECIAL DIETARY USES
RESIDUES OF VETERINARY DRUGS IN FOODS
FOOD ADDITIVES AND CONTAMINANTS
Proposed Draft Guidelines for the Sensory Evaluation of Fish and Shellfish43
43 ALINORM 97/18, Appendix II; ALINORM 97/25 - Part 7
104. The Commission recommended that the sensory evaluation of cephalopods should be considered in view of their importance in trade. The Commission adopted the Proposed Draft Guidelines at Step 5.
Proposed Draft Revised Code of Principles Concerning Milk and Milk Products44
44 ALINORM 97/11, paras. 7-20; ALINORM 97/21, Part I, Table 4; ALINORM 97/25, Part 3-2.
105. The Commission noted that the Committee on General Principles had considered the Proposed Draft Revised Code of Principles and had recommended that it be redrafted in the form of a standard, with the deletion of the general provisions (viz.; Preamble, Article 1 & Article 8) covered by other general Codex texts. With regard to Article 8, the Committee on General Principles had recommended its deletion unless the Committee on Milk and Milk Products could demonstrate that there were specific reasons for its inclusion. This recommendation would not affect the status of the Proposed Draft Code, forwarded for adoption at Step 5.
106. It was pointed out that there was an immediate need for an updated version of the Code to include more modern definitions of milk and milk products to facilitate fair trade.
107. The Commission decided to adopt the Proposed Draft Code at Step 6 with the understanding that the recommendations of the Committee on General Principles would be taken into consideration during the further elaboration and that the Code would be submitted to the Committee on Food Labelling for endorsement of the relevant provisions.
45 ALINORM 97/26, Appendices V and VI, ALINORM 97/25/Part 6, CAC/LIM 13 and 25
Proposed Draft Standard for Gluten-Free Foods
108. The view was expressed that the level of gluten of 200 ppm proposed for some types of gluten-free foods did not adequately protect sensitive consumers and that the value of 20 ppm should be generally applied to all such foods. The problems related to the methods of analysis for the detection of gluten were also stressed.
109. The Commission adopted the Proposed Draft Standard for Gluten-Free Foods at Step 5, while recommending that all relevant comments be taken into account when finalizing the standard.
Proposed Draft Guidelines for Vitamin and Mineral Supplements
110. The Delegations of Canada and the United States, supported by Australia and Japan, expressed their objection to the development of the Guidelines in the framework of Codex as this matter should be left to national authorities to regulate, in view of the wide differences between countries concerning the regulatory status and consumption habits of vitamin and mineral supplements. The development of international guidelines in this area would negatively affect the right of consumers to use these products, and there was no scientific basis for such restriction. It was also pointed out that many sections of the text were in square brackets and there may not be sufficient consensus at this stage to advance it to Step 6.
111. Several delegations pointed out that these products were traded internationally and their unregulated development posed a problem to control authorities, it was therefore essential that work on this issue should continue within the Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses.
112. The Commission agreed to return the Proposed Draft Guidelines for Vitamin and Mineral Supplements to Step 3 for further comments and consideration by the Committee, including a fundamental reconsideration of the need for the Guidelines.
Proposed Draft Maximum Residue Limits for Veterinary Drugs46
46 ALINORM 97/31A, Appendix V.
113. The Commission adopted the proposed draft maximum residue limits as presented, with the understanding that the Committees on Residues of Veterinary Drugs in Foods and on Pesticide Residues and the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committees on Food Additives and on Pesticide Residues would co-ordinate their efforts when evaluating compounds administered as both veterinary drugs and pesticides (e.g., abamectin, cypermethrin, alpha-cypermethrin).
Proposed Draft Schedules of Food Additives (Antioxidants, Preservatives, Stabilizers, Thickeners and Sweeteners) Specifically Permitted in Foods47
47 ALINORM 97/12A, Appendix V.
114. The Commission adopted the proposed draft Schedules of Food Additives Specifically Permitted for Use in Foods as presented. The Delegations of Denmark, France, Norway and Sweden noted the importance of the consideration of technological justification and need when establishing maximum levels for food additives.
Proposed Draft Maximum Levels for Lead48
48 ALINORM 97/12A, Appendix X.
115. The Commission adopted the proposed draft levels as presented. The Commission noted the importance of taking account of source directed measures, good agricultural and manufacturing practice, and methods of analysis when elaborating maximum levels for lead in foods. It was stated that in efforts to reduce lead levels in foods, particular emphasis should be placed on susceptible populations such as infants, children and women of child-bearing age.
Proposed Draft Maximum Residue Limits for Pesticides (MRLs)49
49 ALINORM 97/24A, ANNEX II; ALINORM 97/21, Part I Supplement I, Table 2; and CAC/LIM 25.
116. The Observer from the EU, supported by the Delegation of Spain, expressed concerns about the MRL for fenthion in virgin olive oil at 3 mg/kg, stating that this high level could lead to acute intake risks and requested that acute dietary exposure assessment be carried out. The Observer also stated that animal transfer studies were needed for parathion-methyl to estimate residue levels in animal products arising from residues in or on feedingstuffs.
117. The Commission noted that the Committee on Pesticide Residues was aware of these problems; that an acute reference dose had been recommended for fenthion by the JMPR and that the matter regarding animal transfer studies had been referred to the JMPR.
118. The Commission adopted the MRLs with the understanding that the above comments be taken into account in further deliberation of the relevant MRLs.
Proposed Draft Amendment to the General Standard for the Labelling of Prepackaged Foods (Recommendations for the Labelling of Foods that can Cause Hypersensitivity)50
50 ALINORM 97/22, Appendix IV.
119. In reply to a question on the inclusion of additional substances in the list of foods that can cause hypersensitivity, the Commission noted that the Committee on Food Labelling had recognized that further scientific advice was required in order to determine the foods to be included in the list and the criteria to do so. The Committee had therefore recommended that the Commission ask FAO and WHO to consider urgently how this issue should be better addressed in order to evaluate available scientific data on hypersensitivity.
120. The Commission was informed that the WHO Secretary of JECFA had agreed in principle that it would be possible to address this issue in the framework of JECFA, and that the Commission would be kept informed of how such new work would be carried out. The Commission expressed its appreciation to FAO and WHO for taking action to address this important and urgent issue.
121. The Commission adopted the Proposed Draft Amendment to the General Standard at Step 5 as proposed.