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Codex approves over 500 new food safety standards at 45th Commission


The Codex Alimentarius Commission has adopted a series of new food safety standards at its 45th session which drew to a close on 13 December 2022. Eleven new texts include guidelines on ready-to-use therapeutic foods and on the management of biological foodborne outbreaks; a code of practice for the prevention and reduction of cadmium contamination in cocoa beans, and six new commodity standards. The Commission also established 476 new maximum residue limits for pesticides and 13 maximum levels for contaminants.

For the second year in succession, the report adoption process, which took place online, and which signals the formal closure of a Codex Alimentarius Commission session, ran into overtime but was still unable to conclude, meaning that delegates will now use a written process to review the remaining sections of the final report that could not be discussed in the time available.

With eight hours already spent on adopting the report, Codex Secretary Tom Heilandt believes that through consultation with Members and Observers “collectively we could improve when it comes to this ‘ritual’. We need to define better what we want to get out of reports and then define language to achieve this goal,” he said.  

In the future Codex could consider having a drafting committee of Members to agree on the summaries and conclusions or report only conclusions and in addition publish a verbatim transcript, a system operated by FAO. “We would need to consider the cost for this, “ said Heilandt. “We also need to look at the way we do the adoption whether by a written procedure, virtual, hybrid or physical,” he said.   

The last three Commissions have used virtual adoption but Heilandt plans for CAC46 to return to physical report adoption with remote participation.


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Details of standards adopted at CAC45

Photo credit ©Marco De Mitri

Note: amended on 15/12/2022 to include comments from Tom Heilandt.