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codexalimentarius > Codex Texts

Codex Texts

Codex standards and related texts are voluntary in nature. They need to be translated into national legislation or regulations in order to be enforceable.

Codex standards can be general or specific.

General Standards, Guidelines and Codes of Practice

These are the core Codex texts and apply to all products and product categories. These texts typically deal with hygienic practice, labelling, additives, inspection & certification, nutrition and residues of veterinary drugs and pesticides.

Commodity standards

Codex commodity standards refer to a specific product although increasingly Codex now develops standards for food groups  i.e. one general standard for fruit juices and nectars as opposed to one per fruit. 

The harmonization of food standards contributes to the protection of consumer health and to the fullest possible facilitation of international trade.

How a Codex Standard is developed.

Like all other aspects of the Commission’s work, the procedures for preparing standards are well defined, open and transparent.

A national government or a subsidiary committee of the Commission usually makes the proposal for a standard to be developed They then prepare a discussion paper that outlines what the proposed standard is expected to achieve, and then a project document that indicates the time frame for the work and its relative priority.

  • Getting started - The Commission reviews the project document and decides whether the standard should be developed as proposed.
  • Elaboration of the standard - The preparation of a proposed draft standard is arranged by the Commission Secretariat and circulated to member governments, observer organizations and other Codex committees for two rounds of comments and special advice.
  • Conclusion - Standards can take several years to develop. Once adopted by the Commission, a Codex standard is added to the Codex Alimentarius and published here on the web site. 



CXG 95-2022
Guidelines for ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTF)

CXS 348-2022
Standard for Onions and Shallots

CXS 349-2022
Standard for Berry Fruits

CXC 81-2022
Code of Practice for the Prevention and Reduction of Cadmium Contamination in Cocoa Beans

CXG 97-2022
Guidelines for the Recognition of Active Substances or Authorized Uses of Active Substances of Low Public Health Concern that are Considered Exempted from the Establishment of Maximum Residue Limits or do not give rise to Residues

CXG 96-2022
Guidelines on the Management of Biological Foodborne Outbreaks

CXG 98-2022
Guidelines for Developing Harmonized Food Safety Legislation for the CCAFRICA Region

CXS 352-2022
Standard for Dried Seeds – Nutmeg

CXS 350R-2022
Regional Standard for Dried Meat

CXS 353-2022
Standard for Dried or Dehydrated Chilli Pepper and Paprika

CXA 6-2021
List of Codex Specifications for Food Additives

CXG 93-2021
Principles and Guidelines for the assessment and use of voluntary third-party assurance programmes

CXS 342-2021
Standard for Dried Oregano

CXS 343-2021
Standard for dried roots, rhizomes and bulbs: Dried or dehydrated ginger

CXS 344-2021
Standard for dried floral parts: Cloves

CXS 345-2021
Standard for Dried Basil

CXS 346-2021
General Standard for the labelling of non-retail containers of foods

CXG 94-2021
Guidelines on integrated monitoring and surveillance of foodborne antimicrobial resistance

CXC 80-2020
Code of Practice on Food Allergen Management for Food Business Operators

CXS 334R-2020
Regional Standard for fermented cooked Cassava-based products

CXS 335R-2020
Regional Standard for fresh leaves of Gnetum spp.

CXS 336R-2020
Regional Standard for kava products for use as a beverage when mixed with water

View the COMPLETE list of Codex Texts


Codex 8 step process

The process for developing a standard has eight steps.

Download this infographic describing the process.

For further information on how Codex develops standards consult the Procedural Manual