TWENTY-THIRD FAO REGIONAL CONFERENCE FOR EUROPE
Nicosia, Cyprus, 29-31 May 2002
Agenda Item 9
SYNOPSIS OF THE ACTIVITIES OF THE STATUTORY BODIES OF DIRECT CONCERN TO THE EUROPEAN REGION, IN PARTICULAR THE 32nd SESSION OF THE ECA
The Regional Conference:
took note with interest of the proposal made by The Netherlands to hold a Pan-European Conference on Food Safety and Quality in 2001.
An FAO/WHO Pan-European Conference on Food Safety and Quality was held in Budapest from 25 to 28 February 2002 at the kind invitation of the Government of Hungary. Recommendations of Pan-European Conference are contained in documents ERC/02/4 and ERC/02/4-Sup.1. The Pan European Conference Report is also available (PEC/REP).
Country Statements on the Follow-up to the World Food Summit
The Regional Conference:
highlighted the need for assistance to a number of Member Nations to combat prolonged drought.
Due to the devastating drought that has affected countries in south-east Europe and Central Asia during 2000 and 2001, several FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Missions were undertaken to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Romania. FAO launched emergency appeals for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Romania. FAO has implemented a number of emergency projects providing assistance to drought-affected farmers in Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Romania and a number of project proposals for the upgrading of the national irrigation systems have been or are under formulation.
Rebuilding and Developing Agriculture in Areas Stricken by Disaster and Armed Conflict (Balkans)
The Regional Conference:
agreed that in defining its future activities in the Sub-region, FAO should give particular attention to assisting the countries in moving from emergency to recovery/rehabilitation and development as well as in implementing the necessary reforms in their agricultural sectors.
FAO has ensured a three-month temporary presence in Belgrade under the supervision of the Policy Assistance Branch of REU, to work closely with the FAO Emergency Coordination Office, in order to review and coordinate with donors the proposed interventions to rehabilitate the agricultural sector and identify areas for FAO technical assistance in close consultation with government and relevant stakeholders.
In Kosovo, FAO has continued to cooperate with UNMIK and is in close contact with the European Agency for Reconstruction. FAO is actively participating in on-going UNDAF preparation. In this connection, the Policy Assistance Branch of the REU is developing a strategy for Kosovo which will be incorporated in UNDAF and will include project proposals for the rehabilitation of the agricultural sector.
An FAO Emergency Coordination Office was also established in the FYR of Macedonia to coordinate with donors the proposed interventions to rehabilitate the agricultural sector.
FAO has increased its collaboration with the Stability Pact Secretariat and has participated in the various meetings organized by the Pact (Regional Funding Conference to Finance the Regional Reconstruction Projects in South-eastern Europe, March 2000 in Brussels; Working Table II, May 2001 in Tirana; Stability Pact Initiative for Social Cohesion, October 2001 in Belgrade; Stability Pact Regional Conference, October 2001 in Romania). FAO has contributed to the Social Cohesion Plan by formulating project proposals submitted to the Stability Pact Regional Conference (Romania, late October).
As far as the other countries in the Balkans are concerned, missions have been sent to Albania (April/December 2001), Bosnia-Herzegovina (April 2001), Croatia, (September 2001), Bulgaria (October 2001), and TFYR of Macedonia (early 2002) to identify specific areas in which FAO could be of assistance in formulating and implementing the necessary reforms in the agricultural sector.
Food Safety and Quality as Affected by Organic Farming
The Regional Conference:
invited FAO to bring forward priority actions to promote organic farming the Region
REU continued to coordinate the ESCORENA1 Sustainable Rural environment and Energy Network (SREN) working group on Organic Farming. Following a major workshop in 1999 on participatory and on-farm research approaches and their particular adaptation to organic production methods (proceeds in REU Technical Series 63), the working group met in several smaller meetings. These workshops have initiated several collaborative projects. Within the ESCORENA networks, the Interregional REU/RNE Sheep and Goat Network is focusing part of its activities in the direction of organic production methods while the Trace Element Network held a workshop in 2001 to coordinate its efforts in chemical and qualitative analysis and to make a comparison between organically and conventionally produced foods for food safety.
REU, following a request from the Government, has formulated a project document for the development of organic and other specialized production methods for Croatia which should be approved in the very near future. The Regional Office also actively participates in the evaluation and follow-up of other organic agriculture projects through its contribution to the Interdepartmental Working Group on Organic Agriculture.
Food Safety and Quality as Affected by Animal Feedstuff
The Regional Conference:
stressed that coordination between different international organizations needed to be encouraged in order to ensure coherence, to avoid duplication and to identify gaps in existing legal provisions.
FAO has continued to closely collaborate with WHO within the framework of the Codex Alimentarius Commission on issues related to animal feedstuff and is a major contributor to the activities of the Ad Hoc Intergovernmental Task Force on Animal Feeding (1st meeting was held June 2000 and the 2nd meeting was held in March 2001). It jointly organized with WHO and OIE the Technical Consultation on BSE and its risks: Animal Health, Public health and Trade held in Paris in June 2001.
Report on FAO Activities in the Region, 2000-2001
The Regional Conference:
recognized the valuable role of FAO in research, extension and information exchange activities and underlined that these should be further strengthened.
REU has continued to support the ESCORENA system which is an umbrella for cooperation between research institutions focused on food, agriculture and related fields. The system aims to promote the voluntary exchange of information and experimental data, to support joint research projects and to facilitate the sharing of expertise and technologies, especially from advanced to less advanced nations. A new ESCORENA Website on Internet was developed in 2001.
A number of case studies on agricultural knowledge and information system for rural development (AKIS/RD) have been carried out in countries of the Central and Eastern European Subregion (Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania and Poland).
noted that coordination and cooperation with other institutions working in similar areas would build needed synergies.
Close cooperation is maintained with other institutions in particular with CIHEAM, AARINENA, EFARD, EIARD, INRA, NAGREF, INIA and ICARDA with a view to coordinating activities and to avoid duplication.
encouraged the continuation of joint activities with the UN/ECE and other institutions.
FAO participated (May/June 2001) in a UN/ECE mission to review land administration operations in Georgia and to provide guidance to the State Department of Land Management. FAO was requested to participate in this mission as a result of successful cooperation with UN/ECE in land administration in Armenia, in 2000. UN/ECE and FAO are both active in land administration in Central and Eastern Europe. Joint participation in the mission served to strengthen the partnership between the two UN agencies in countries of common interest.
noted that greater emphasis should be given to the pre-accession process as this is of high importance to most countries in transition.
A paper containing areas of technical assistance to facilitate integration of CEECs into the EU and the potential role of FAO in the accession process was presented at a Ministerial Conference of EU accession countries held in Lithuania in April 2001. This was followed by an exchange of correspondence between the Director-General of FAO and the EU Commissioner for Agriculture. The issue will now be discussed with the EU Commission for Enlargement.
agreed that the issue of the meetings of the European Commission on Agriculture (ECA) should be further discussed in the European Regional Group in Rome based on a document which would include the implications of the various alternatives to be provided by the Secretariat for a meeting of the Group scheduled in September 2000.
REU prepared a non-paper "ECA - Options for Sessions Scheduling and Agenda" which was discussed in the European Regional Group (ERG) in Rome. Following a recommendation of ERG to the 119th Session of the FAO Council, the Council decided that the future mandate of the ECA be geared to reviewing technical aspects and issues of importance to European agriculture and rural development, that it should be seen as a consultative body and that the results of its discussions and recommendations be presented to the European Regional Conference.
A. THIRTY-SECOND SESSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION ON AGRICULTURE (ECA)
As a result of the recommendation endorsed by the 119th Session of the FAO Council to the effect that the ECA’s future mandate be geared to reviewing technical aspects and issues of importance to European agriculture and that it should be seen as a technical body of the European Regional Conference, the 32nd Session of the ECA was held in Rome at FAO Headquarters on 7 and 8 March 2002. Debate focused on the item: Sustainable management of land and water resources: combating desertification and prevention of land degradation. The outcome of the debate and relevant recommendations are contained in documents ERC/02/5, ECA 32/02/2-Rev.1 and ECA 32/02/2-Sup.1).
With regard to the item on the Review of the activities of the European System of Cooperative Research Networks in Agriculture (ESCORENA), the Commission requested that the relevant document be revised and submitted to the 23rd Regional Conference for Europe so that a decision on the question of support for ESCORENA could be taken. The document was revised and distributed to Member countries (ECA 32/02/4-Rev.1).
B. JOINT SESSION OF THE EUROPEAN FORESTRY COMMISSION
(30th Session) AND THE UN/ECE TIMBER COMMITTEE (58th)
The UN/ECE Timber Committee and the European Forestry Commission (EFC) met in joint session in Rome at FAO Headquarters from 9 to 13 October 2000. The two bodies examined a number of routine items and approved the following integrated programme of work for 2001-2005. The full report is available on following website: http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/MEETING/003/X6718E.HTM.
Description: Information is regularly collected and disseminated on production, trade and prices of round wood and forest products, and forest fires.
Method of work: Statistics are collected on an annual basis from countries and published in the Timber Bulletin and on the Internet. Data collection is coordinated with FAO Rome, EUROSTAT and ITTO and the results are shared between all four organizations. The whole system is reviewed by the Joint FAO/ECE Working Party on Forest Economics and Statistics at its biennial sessions.
Annual outputs: publication of six issues of the Timber Bulletin: on forest products prices, statistics on production and trade, trade flow data, the annual market review, forest fire statistics and the Committee's market discussion at its annual session. The data and analysis are also made available in electronic form and on the Internet.
Description: Information on the forest resource of the temperate and boreal zones (including developed countries outside the ECE region), will be collected and published in the context of the FAO global forest resource assessment, under the guidance of the Joint FAO/ECE Working Party on Forest Economics and Statistics.
Method of work: An enquiry was prepared under the supervision of a team of specialists, taking into account the recommendations of the Expert Consultation at Kotka (Finland) in June 1996. The results were published in 2000. At all stages, the work is being carried out in close cooperation with the FAO Forestry Department and other organizations active in this area.
Duration: Continuing, review in 2003
Outputs in 2000/2001: publication, database and background documentation. The team met in 2000, at the European Forest Institute.
Description: The Committee and the Commission will provide support, as appropriate, to the follow-up to UNCED, including the work of the Commission for Sustainable Development (CSD), the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF), and the Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests in Europe (MCPFE). In particular, the Commission will review, on a regular basis, national forest policies and selected topical policy issues, such as certification of sustainable forest management, in order to review implementation at the national level of the provisions of UNCED and the pan-European process, and as support for national policy makers. The Committee and the Commission will collect and analyse information relevant to Helsinki Conference resolutions H1 and H2, notably as regards quantitative indicators of sustainable forest management and support the reporting to the pan-European process on this subject.
Method of work: At each EFC session, delegations submit national progress reports, according to an outline drawn up by the Executive Committee. These reports are synthesized by the secretariat before the session, presented, discussed and subsequently published. The Committee and the Commission will cooperate with the pan-European process in drawing up a MCPFE programme of work, as laid down by the Lisbon Ministerial Conference. The team of public relations specialists will continue to work towards creating a positive image of the forest sector, according to the mandate in annex III. The team of specialists on socio-economic aspects of forests, under the auspices of the Joint FAO/ECE/ILO Committee, provided input to resolution L1 of the Lisbon Conference and the team of specialists on participation and partnerships in forestry will submit a report on this topic to the MCPFE. Possible activities on trade and environment issues in the forest and forest industries sector will be carried out as decided by the Committee and the Commission during the strategic review of the programme. Strategies to stimulate and promote the sound use of wood and other forest-based products, as environmentally friendly and renewable materials will also be discussed by a seminar in Romania in 2001.
Duration: to 2002
Outputs in 2000/2001: Review of national progress reports, at joint session, Rome 2000. International Communications Forum, Canada, September 2000. European Forums for Forest and Society (to be confirmed). Report on public participation in forest decision making. Possible activities on trade and environment, promotion of sustainable use of wood.
Description: The Committee and Commission will provide assistance to the countries in transition, in order to promote the process of economic reform and transition to a market economy in their forest and forest products sector. The topics and themes to be included in this programme shall be in line with the priorities and needs identified by the countries concerned. The Committee and the Commission will contribute to implementing resolution H3 on forestry assistance to countries in transition, by monitoring and analysing this assistance; in particular to determine whether it corresponds to countries' real needs and priorities.
Method of work: The work is guided by a team of specialists, which meets regularly. The secretariat, as international coordinator for H3, collects stores and analyses information and reports regularly to the parent bodies and, as appropriate, to meetings of the pan-European process. A data base on forestry assistance to countries in transition is maintained and its contents made available. The Committee and Commission implement a wide range of activities, notably workshops, which are scheduled and organized in a flexible manner, under two broad headings:
• Institution building, including legal and policy infrastructure;
• Development of market oriented and ecologically sound enterprises.
Duration: to 2004
Outputs in 2000/2001: a workshop on sustainable development of marketing of wood and non-wood forest products and recreation services in forests. The database on forestry assistance to countries in transition, established under resolution H3 will be updated regularly and made widely available. The team will meet in 2001.
Description: The Committee analyses, on a continuous basis, short-term trends in the production, trade, consumption and prices of forest products and forecasts short-term prospects, with a view to providing Governments and the forest products sector with accurate and up-to-date information and assessments.
Method of work: The annual session of the Timber Committee reviews short-term trends and prospects in the markets, on the basis of estimates provided by delegations and the Forest Products Annual Market Review, prepared by the secretariat, which reviews trends in the previous year. An analysis of trends and short-term outlook, approved by the Committee, is published. The Committee's market discussion also reviews trends in the markets for certified forest products on the basis of information provided by delegations on developments in their countries, and statements by experts.
Annual outputs: Forest Products Annual Market Review and the Committee's market statement at its annual session.
Description: The Committee and Commission prepare and publish studies of the outlook for the forest and forest products sector in the region, addressing issues such as the long-term scenarios for the supply and demand of forest products and other goods and services of the forest, as well as other major, policy relevant, issues, of a regional or subregional nature. The work is overseen by the Joint FAO/ECE Working Party on Forest Economics and Statistics, which determines in particular the scope and objectives of the studies to be undertaken.
Method of work: A baseline scenario, with approximately the same scope as ETTS V, and "business-as-usual" assumptions will be prepared, followed by a series of alternative scenarios on policy-related themes. Analysis will be based on quantitative scenarios, prepared with and reviewed by national correspondents. Work will be coordinated with the FAO outlook studies programme.
Output in 2000/2001: Outline and plan of action for future outlook studies. Meeting of national correspondents, identification of themes for alternative scenarios. Baseline scenario completed in 2002.
Description: The Working Party keeps under review the needs for international statistics in the forest and forest products sector and develops programmes to meet those needs, notably with regard to improving comparability; develops methodologies for collection and analysis of information and statistics; and undertakes projects in the field of economics and statistics relating to forestry and forest products.
Method of work: The Working Party meets every two years and advises the parent bodies and the secretariat on the implementation of work in its field. In particular, it is responsible for guiding the implementation, in its area of competence, of programme elements 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.5 and 1.6.
Outputs in 2000/2001: At its session in 2001 the Working Party will evaluate the TBFRA, review plans for the next outlook study, and consider intergovernmental cooperation on forest sector statistics.
Description: The Joint Committee assists countries, in particular those which its parent bodies may identify at any time as requiring priority attention, to develop their forestry activities in the context of sustainable development. This is achieved by fostering international cooperation on technical, economic and organizational aspects of forest management and forest working techniques and of the training of forest workers in logging and forest operations.
Method of work: The Joint Committee's activities are led by a Steering Committee, which meets annually. There are three subject areas: management (e.g multiple use forestry, ecological and economical issues, marketing, and information systems), technology (e.g. forest engineering, ecologically and economically sound operations in silviculture, wood harvesting and transport) and training (e.g. for workers, supervisors and managers, including applied ergonomics, occupational safety and health and social aspects of forestry). Much of the work is carried out by teams of specialists which report to the Joint Committee and Steering Committee sessions, or by seminars or workshops hosted by member countries.
Outputs: The Joint Committee's work programme for 2001-2005 is set out in the report of its twenty-third session (June 2000) (TIM/EFC/WP.1/2000/2).
Description: Silva Mediterranea will advise FAO and member countries in the Mediterranean region on the implementation of the Mediterranean Forest Action Programme (MED-FAP). It will also encourage the exchange of information and the coordination of research in topics of interest to Mediterranean forestry, through research networks.
Method of work: Silva Mediterranea will act, at regular sessions and between them, as an inter-governmental forum for the coordination, monitoring and orientation of MED-FAP. It will contribute to identifying international regional priority activities, as well as designing and monitoring them. Six research networks are at present operational, focusing on forest fires, key species of the subregion (stone pine, cedar species, and the most recently created network, on cork oak), other multipurpose tree species, and on selection of stands of Mediterranean conifers for the production of seeds to be used in reforestation programmes.
Description: The Working Party collects information, documents technologies, monitors evolution, exchanges experience and discusses progress within mountain ecosystems in view of their sustainable management and conservation. Important areas of concentration will be sustainable management and security of mountain ecosystems, with special attention to torrent control, avalanches, risk zoning, and mapping and early warning systems.
Method of work: The Working Party has an important role in the follow-up of Agenda 21, and supports FAO's role as task manager for chapter 13 on mountain ecosystems. The twenty-first session was held in May/June 1998 in the Czech Republic. Key areas of concentration will be sustainable management of mountain ecosystems, improved mountain livelihood systems, in response to UNCED, activities related to international agreements on mountains, and risk and disaster control and monitoring.
C. EUROPEAN COMMISSION FOR THE CONTROL OF FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE (EUFMD)
The 34th Session of EUFMD was held in Rome at FAO Headquarters from 21 to 23 March 2001. The full report is available on following website: http://www.fao.org/livestock/agah/eufmd/reports/sess34/default.htm. The main conclusions and recommendations of the Session were as follows:
Situation of FMD in Europe and in other regions
1. The risk of FMD has increased significantly in 2000 and 2001 due to many factors. These included: the specific characteristics of certain strains of virus (e.g. PanAsia O strain); increased trade and movements of animals and animal products; increased movements of people (tourists and migrants); the deterioration of national veterinary services in many countries due to under-staffing, poor salaries and cut-backs in resources, and a general neglect of bio security issues and their hidden costs when driving forward trade liberalisation measures.
2. The outbreak of FMD in the United Kingdom due to the type O, PanAsian strain was yet another example of the danger posed to livestock by this particular virus in many areas of the world. This danger has been recognised for several years and the propensity for its spread was clear from its involvement in recent outbreaks in areas normally free of FMD, or of this serotype, such as Japan, South Africa and now the UK, Ireland, France and the Netherlands.
3. The likely origin of the UK outbreak in swill-fed pigs again emphasised the severe risks associated with this method of animal husbandry, not only for the introduction of FMD, but also of other serious list A diseases.
4. The problem to detect the early cases was a major reason for the subsequent, wholesale spread of disease and may well demonstrate a lack of awareness on the part of some livestock owners after 32 years of freedom from the disease in the UK.
5. The UK outbreak underlined the danger posed by infected sheep as disseminators of infection, especially in a fully susceptible livestock population, and most particularly when the strain of virus involved causes unapparent clinical disease in this species.
6. The deficiencies in identification of sheep and the recording of their movements make the tracing process extremely difficult and, in some cases, impossible.
7. It is acknowledged that the UK took very strong measures after the disease was detected, but there is as yet no sign that the control measures are showing the progress of the disease. The full extent of the infection has yet to be determined.
8. The spread of virus before the detection of the disease in the UK to Northern Ireland and to the mainland of Europe, including to date France and the Netherlands, has been attributable to the transhipment of live animals, especially sheep, which were either silently diseased or incubating the disease. This is particularly hazardous trade in respect of the dissemination of FMD and, potentially, of other serious diseases.
9. The outbreaks of FMD in Western Europe had revealed some serious deficiencies in the capability of some national authorities to effect diagnostic testing and serological testing on an adequate scale in the event of an emergency. This was in large part due to limitations in the immediate availability of reagents and kits for the detection and typing of viral antigen and for the detection antibodies.
1. All European countries should now be especially vigilant against the possible introduction of the type O, PanAsia topotype of FMD virus into their susceptible livestock.
2. All countries should bear in mind that the prevalence of stains of FMD other than the type O PanAsia strain are also increasing markedly in different regions. A notable example was seen with the Asia 1 virus, currently prevalent throughout much of the Tran Caucasus region and in Iran and Turkey and recently in Greece.
3. All countries recognise the increased risk of FMD and take advantage of the lessons learned by the affected member countries to improve their contingency planning and prevention measures for FMD.
4. State Veterinary Services should be funded, staffed, sized, structured and resourced to a level commensurate with their workload and responsibilities in order to maintain a surveillance of FMD and other epizootic diseases and to deal efficiently with major disease emergencies.
5. Much more specific attention should be given to the bio security dangers inherent in the structure of the animal production industry in Europe and internationally. Live animal movements, including both the transit and final destination of such movements, should be traced in relation to the likelihood of disease spreading from the UK, Ireland, France and the Netherlands.
6. Serious consideration should be given to improving the control of the trade in live animals within and between the member countries of the EUFMD Commission.
7. Serious consideration should be given to the comprehensive marking and registration of individual animals, and particularly of sheep and goats, throughout member countries of the EUFMD Commission
8. Serious consideration should be given to the stricter control, or to the total prohibition of swill feeding throughout the member countries of the EUFMD Commission. In any event, waste food from ports, airports and motorway rest areas should be strictly controlled, collected and totally destroyed.
9. The review of national Contingency Plans should include the urgent consideration of requirements for and the immediate availability of adequate quantities of reagents and kits for the detection and typing of viral antigen and the detection of both neutralising antibodies and antibodies to the non-structural proteins of FMD virus. The National Veterinary Laboratories should evaluate their need and keep the appropriate stock as a reserve.
10. Measures should be investigated with WRL participation to develop possible means for the provision of test reagents/kits to EUFMD member countries in emergency situations.
11. It is essential to establish urgently a bank of reagents to be employed in standardised tests for the diagnosis and serological surveillance of FMD.
12. There is a need for further work on the formal and precise definition by the OIE of the terms “infection”, “case” and “outbreak” in respect of FMD.
13. There is a need for clarification of sampling size and methods to be applied in the investigation of suspicion of FMD, during an outbreak and also for serosurveillance in Europe in collaboration with the OIE.
14. An international OIE/FAO conference should be urgently organised on FMD, aiming in particular at questions related to: to the conditions of declaration of disease outbreaks, the use of vaccination – especially the vaccination of endangered species and other zoo animals – and the risks linked to the exchange of animals and products including animals for non-food production.
15. The international community should provide enhanced support for surveillance and control of FMD in countries where the disease is still endemic.
1. The existing strategy and tactics which have been developed by Turkey with assistance from international organizations are appropriate for the control of FMD. Notable success has been achieved by Turkey in the protection of Thrace and Europe. However, the disease remains endemic throughout Anatolia due to numerous constraints which have prevented the full implementation of the control programme.
2. Given the existing economic circumstances in Turkey it would be very difficult for the country to implement the existing policies using only national resources. For this reason, the support of international organizations would be of great assistance in moving towards the medium-term objective of control and the longer-term objective of eradication.
3. The severity of the present FMD crisis in some of the western countries of the European Union should not be allowed to obscure the fact that the risk of the introduction of exotic viruses into Europe from Turkey remains a persistent danger. In addition to the endemic type O virus, Turkey has at least two antigenically distinct type A viruses circulating (A Iran 96 and A Iran 99). Type Asia 1 had also recently become established and had spread into Greece. In addition, A22 like viruses were again known to be present in Iran and threatened the livestock of Turkey and the territories to the East and South of the Bosphorus.
1. Both Turkey and international authorities should give serious consideration to the evaluation and selective implementation of the detailed recommendations given and the priorities ascribed in the report.
2. Further timely support from the international community, including the EC, FAO, OIE and other organizations, would be extremely valuable in the expeditious achievement of the recommended improvements.
3. The new status of Turkey as a candidate for EU membership could provide the opportunity for increased funding from the EU to enable a substantial FMD control programme to be implemented, always provided that Turkey ascribes the required level of priority to the programme.
D. GENERAL FISHERIES COMMISSION FOR THE MEDITERRANEAN (GFCM)
The twenty-fifth Session of the GFCM was held in Malta from 12 to 15 September 2000. The main issues discussed during the meeting were the scale of contribution to an autonomous budget, the conclusion and recommendations resulting from the second session of the Aquaculture Committee (CAQ) and the third session of the Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC). Activities carried out by the two supporting projects ADRIAMED and COPEMED were also reviewed. The Commission agreed the Scale of Contribution which would be applicable to the GFCM autonomous budget once the Agreement entered into force. The Commission, while reviewing proposals on the joint GFCM/ICCAT (International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas) working groups on large pelagic fishes updated its past resolutions 95/1 and 97/3 and adopted two new resolutions 2000/1 and 2000/2 concerning the minimum size of blue fin tuna.
The twenty-sixth Session of the GFCM was held in Ischia (Italy) from 10 to 13 September 2001. At this session, the Commission reviewed the intercessional activities, mainly the implementation of the recommendations of its twenty-fifth session, the recommendations and conclusions of the fourth session of the Scientific Advisory Committee and the activities of the GFCM aquaculture networks. The Commission took note of the achievements of the two regional projects (ADRIAMED and COPEMED) and reviewed the recommendations by ICCAT concerning the management of large pelagic species and adopted three of them. The Commission also recommended that the Joint GFCM/ICCAT Working Group on Large Pelagic Species address the sustainability of the blue fin tuna resources including the planning/farming of this species in the Mediterranean. The Commission updated the terms of reference of SAC and agreed on a temporary delimitation of the Management Units that were renamed “Geographical Sub-Areas”. The Commission reviewed a proposal for the setting up of a Joint EIFAC/GFCM Working Group on Sturgeon (Acipenser sturio) and endorsed it. The Commission was informed of the new MEDSUDMED project which is due to be implemented in the Central Mediterranean under the umbrella of ADRIAMED.
E. CODEX COORDINATING COMMITTEE FOR EUROPE
The Twenty-second Session of the Codex Coordinating Committee for Europe was held in Spain from 3 to 6 October 2000. The summary and conclusions of this session were as follows:
- agreed to discontinue work on the revision of the Regional Standard for Vinegar and to propose that the Commission should revoke the current Standard;
- agreed to return the Proposed Draft Revised Standard for Mayonnaise to Step 3 and to ask the advice of the Commission on the need for a Regional Standard for Mayonnaise and for regional standards in general.
- expressed its support for the precautionary principle and considered that the debate on this question should proceed in the Committee on General Principles;
- recommended that all concerned Committees consider the issue of gluten-free foods as a matter of priority in order to establish a level and a method of analysis applicable to gluten-free foods;
- reviewed the measures taken by governments to improve consumer participation and agreed to consider further the integration of consumer concerns in Codex work at its next session.