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Food import export working group makes progress on draft standards


Codex members and observers met in Edinburgh, UK from 28-31 May 2018 to continue work on the development of guidance on two draft Codex texts. The first deals with regulatory approaches to third party assurance schemes and aims to promote a harmonised and robust approach when countries consider such schemes to enhance their regulatory arrangements and delivery of official controls within the National Food Control System (NFCS). The second refers to the use of systems equivalence and is intended to cover situations where it can be reasonably expected that the NFCS of the exporting country will, on an ongoing basis, reliably deliver food that meets similar overall human health, food suitability and technical outcomes as achieved within the importing country.

The working group, established by the Codex Committee on Food Import and Export Inspection and Certification Systems (CCFICS), is meeting for the second time and is again using online webinar technology to enable delegates all over the world to participate  ‘in real time’. One co-chair and three different regions have been taking part online this week. 

Fran Freeman - Chair

Good progress

Work on drafting these texts has been under the overall leadership of the CCFICS chair, Ms Fran Freeman from Australia, who said: “Thanks to the engagement, collaborative spirit and hard work by the participants, we have made good progress on our work to update two important areas ahead of their Step 3 consideration at CCFICS24” (Brisbane, Australia, 22-26 October 2018).

What is CCFICS?

The committee, hosted by Australia since its inception in 1992, develops principles and guidelines for food import and export inspection and certification systems with a view to harmonising methods and procedures which protect the health of consumers, ensure fair trading practices and facilitate international trade in foodstuffs. It also works to develop principles and guidelines to provide assurance where necessary that foodstuffs comply with requirements, especially statutory health requirements.

Visit the committee web page

Visit the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources web site