STATUTES OF THE CODEX ALIMENTARIUS COMMISSION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE FOOD STANDARDS PROGRAMME BY THE COMMISSION
The Codex Alimentarius Commission was established to implement the Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme, the purpose of which is, as set down in the Statutes of the Commission, to protect the health of consumers and to ensure fair practices in the food trade; to promote coordination of all food standards work undertaken by international governmental and non-governmental organizations; to determine priorities and initiate and guide the preparation of draft standards through and with the aid of appropriate organizations; to finalize standards, and, after acceptance by governments, publish them in a Codex Alimentarius either as regional or world-wide standards.
The Statutes of the Codex Alimentarius Commission have been approved by the Governing bodies of the FAO and WHO. The Commission is a subsidiary body of these two parent organizations. The Statutes and Rules of the Commission are to be found in the Procedural Manual of the Commission.
THE CODEX ALIMENTARIUS
The Codex Alimentarius is a collection of internationally adopted food standards presented in a uniform manner. These food standards aim at protecting consumers health and ensuring fair practices in the food trade. The Codex Alimentarius also includes provisions of an advisory nature in the form of codes of practice, guidelines and other recommended measures to assist in achieving the purposes of the Codex Alimentarius. The publication of the Codex Alimentarius is intended to guide and promote the elaboration and establishment of definitions and requirements for foods, to assist in their harmonization and, in doing so, to facilitate international trade.
The Codex Alimentarius includes standards for all the principal foods, whether processed, semi-processed or raw, for distribution to the consumer. Materials for further processing into foods are included to the extent necessary to achieve the purposes of the Codex Alimentarius as defined. The Codex Alimentarius includes provisions in respect of the hygienic and nutritional quality of food, including microbiological norms, provisions for food additives, pesticide residues, contaminants, labelling and presentation, and methods of analysis and sampling. It also includes provisions of an advisory nature in the form of codes of practice, guidelines and other recommended measures. Codex standards contain requirements for food aimed at ensuring for the consumer a sound, wholesome food product free from adulteration, correctly labelled and presented.
The standards and maximum residue limits adopted by the Codex Alimentarius Commission are intended for formal acceptance by governments in accordance with its General Principles.
The standards and maximum limits for residues of pesticides and veterinary drugs in foods and feeds, accompanied by an appropriate communication, are sent for action to Ministries of Agriculture or Ministries of Foreign Affairs, as appropriate, of Member Nations of FAO and to Ministries of Health of Member States of WHO. The standards and maximum limits for pesticide residues and veterinary drugs, accompanied by the communication referred to, are also sent to national Codex Contact Points, FAO and WHO Regional Offices, FAO Representatives, Embassies in Rome and Permanent Missions to the UN in Geneva.
The standards and maximum limits for residues of pesticides and veterinary drugs in foods and feeds, which have taken a number of years to develop, are the product of a wide measure of international agreement and cooperation. They are compatible with the norms considered by FAO and WHO as best guaranteeing the protection of the health of consumers and the facilitation of international trade in food.
This Volume contains the Codex Standards for Fats and Oils and the Recommended Code of Practice for the Storage and Transport of Edible Fats and Oils in Bulk.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission at its 14th Session in 1981 adopted 22 individual Codex Standards for fats and oils, including the Codex Standards for Olive Oil, Virgin and Refined, and Refined Olive-Pomace Oil, Margarine and Minarine. These three standards are still valid; all other individual standards have been revised and integrated into general standards as indicated below.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission at its 17th Session in 1987 adopted the Recommended International Code of Practice for the Storage and Transport of Edible Oils and Fats in Bulk.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission at its 21st Session in 1995 adopted the Codex Standard for Edible Palm Olein and the Codex Standard for Edible Palm Stearin.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission at its 23rd Session in 1999 adopted the Codex Standard for Named Animal Fats and the Codex Standard for Named Vegetable Oils. These Standards supersede the individual standards for fats and oils, including palm olein and palm stearin, with the exception of olive oil. The Commission also adopted the Revised Codex Standard for Fats and Oils not Covered by Individual Standards and the Revised Recommended International Code of Practice for the Storage and Transport of Edible Fats and Oils in Bulk.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission at its 24th Session in 2001 adopted an amendment to the Codex Standard for Named Vegetable Oils to include High Oleic Acid Safflower Oil and High Oleic Acid Sunflower Oil and an amendment to the Recommended International Code of Practice for the Storage and Transport of Edible Fats and Oils in Bulk to include a List of Banned Immediate Previous Cargoes.