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CAC40 Chairperson’s Side Event

Ms Awilo Ochieng Pernet, Chairperson of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, opened the last side event of its 40th Session, which was about enhancing regional dialogue, collaboration and cooperation on Codex food safety standards. 

Chairperon's side event

A panel of speakers featuring Canada, Chile, China, Estonia, India, Iran, Kenya, Morocco, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, the Russian Federation, Senegal, and the United States of America gave presentations on “reaping the benefits of Codex” and “raising awareness about the importance of Codex and food safety”. 

“Every year, 4 million Canadians are affected by food-borne illness, resulting in 238 deaths annually” said the panellist representing Canada. “With a wide range of actors involved in food safety, it is necessary to build a “whole of government” approach and a good regulatory management, grounded in science, and to reflect stakeholders interests, including industry”, she added, highlighting the importance of awareness-raising programmes. 

In the words of the representative of India: “When we raise awareness on food safety, we create a demand, and when we create a demand we must make sure that food is safe”.

The United States of America highlighted the importance of Codex science-based standards. “Codex is important to our national interest as a major agricultural importer, as it enhances food safety and consumer protection, and as an exporter, as it facilitates and expands market access.”

In conclusion, the side event served to share experiences and inspire greater dialogue, collaboration and cooperation on Codex and food safety. The week-long meeting began winding up with this opportunity for delegations to network and learn from each other with only the adoption of the report remaining on the agenda.

Mirko Montuori


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