Header graphic for print

Food Safety News

Breaking news for everyone's consumption

US Versus World Over GM Food Labels

If you are going to “do the Codex”, you better already be in Paris.  Next week, you will be in Xian, China and you will finish out April in Izmir, Turkey.  In May, it’s back around the world to Quebec City, Canada.

Yesterday in Paris, the Codex Committee on General Principals got underway for a week.  Next Monday, the Codex Committee on Pesticide Residues begins its week of work in Xian.   Then the Codex Committee on Contaminants in Food finishes up the last week of April in Izmir.

And, on May 3, the Codex Committee on Food Labeling will gather in Quebec.

The Codex Alimentarius Commission is attached to both the Food and Agriculture Organizations of the United Nations and the World Health Organizations. Codex fulfills important functions when it comes to world food safety.

In Quebec, delegates from the 180 Codex countries are going to replay a familiar debate over whether or not genetically modified food should be so labeled.

Since Bill Clinton was President, the United States has favored a voluntary labeling strategy.  Labeling of GM food would be required only if important end characteristics required it, such as the potential for allergies or nutritional changes.

Mandatory labeling for GM foods is favored by the European Union, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.  The impasse has left Canada mediating between the camps and hosting a lot of meetings on the issue.

In Paris this week, the Codex Committee on General Principals is considering a revised Code of Ethics for International Trade in Foods, risk analysis policies, and a definition for what constitutes a “competent authority.”

The agenda for the Codex Committee on Pesticide Residues in Xian beginning on April 19 is a long one.  The committee will set Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) for certain foods and animal feeds including certain fruits and vegetables.

The Codex Committee on Contaminates in Foods on April 26 in Izmir will begin taking up a draft code for reducing ethyl carbonate in stone fruit distillates.  It is also scheduled to take up maximum levels for Melamine in food and feed.

But, it’s the Codex Committee on Food Labeling that is likely to get the most attention.   While GM food is becoming increasing common around the world, so too have requirements for consumer-friendly labeling.

That makes the U.S. goal of getting Codex to drop its work on GM food labeling all the more difficult.

© Food Safety News
  • For years now I have warned people that when nations sign on to trade groups, they are trading off their sovereignty, their right to self-rule.
    As you can see from this article, the US (and in fact all signatory nations) have their one vote at the table overwhelmed by the other 193.
    There is no “win” at Codex. Its sole purpose is to direct all growth, sales, and delivery of all food, everywhere on the planet, directing all profits to Big Pharma/Big Agriculture by mandating GMO’s, synthetic nutrients, low-dose, useless potencies, vaccinations of livestock, and draconian enforcement via trade sanctions.
    These groups are the platform for the foundation of global governance, and Americans, unless they stand up now, will see their electoral votes becoming increasingly meaningless, as “international obligations” and “enlightened sovereignty” takes over. The old Bill C-6, which soon will reincarnate in Canada’s Parliament, opens the door for the governance of Canada by foreign committee.
    This is just the beginning. The net has been formed with trade groups over the past 50 years, with almost every nation on earth being tied into one of them or another. And as the WTO says right on its website, a trade agreement is the international version of a contract. In exchange for the benefits derived from membership in the group, the nations agree to govern their sovereignty according to the wishes of the group. YOUR WISHES ARE MEANINGLESS; YOUR VOTE IS MEANINGLESS; YOUR SOVEREIGNTY IS GONE.
    Codex is not a social club. Its rules are binding on our governments, and we all lose control.
    Since when did we need oversight to be decent to each other?
    If you think this is all about food, think again. It’s about OWNING ALL LIFE BY PATENT.

  • Doc Mudd

    Codex moves us nearer all being on the same page for food safety and simplifies global trade in food commodities. If someone can’t stomach the advancement of uniform safety standards and fair trade they can always come out swinging with a cockamamie conspiracy theory, I suppose. One wonders what the conspiracy theorists’ real agenda is in opposing global progress.

  • Amanda Cheescake

    Indeed, it is sad to see that some people can be so misinformed. If people were to keep an open mind, and get all the facts, then their conspiracy theories might not look so plausible after all. And yet people stick to them as though they had no choice. To me, it just seems like desperate attempts at attention. Desperate, and ignorant. People (and nations) generally agree to things for a reason.