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Private food standards

Private food standards addressing food safety are playing an increasingly important role in determining market access in international trade.

The main drivers for the proliferation of these private food safety standard schemes have been: the clear assignment of legal responsibility to food chain operators for ensuring food safety; increasingly global and complex supply chains; and, increasing consumer awareness of food and food systems and their impact on health and, in particular, on food safety.

The impact of private standards on developing countries ability to access international markets is highly debated in many international fora and was recently discussed during the 33rd Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission Geneva, Switzerland, 5-9 July 2010.

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