The Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) promised to introduce new food safety standards and assess and address risks, as stated by CAC Chairman Sanjay Dave at its golden jubilee celebrations, which took place in Mumbai recently.

The celebrations were a highlight of the fifth national research and development workshop for the food processing sector, which took the second day of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry’s Food World India.

Dave, who also serves as advisor to the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), said, “The work of standardization in the food sector started in 1903, and subsequently a number of countries started adhering to them. They planned to set up CAC in 1961, and finally in July 1963, Codex—a joint body of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization—was set up.

“The primary job of the body was to develop international food standards, guidelines and other recommendations to protect the health of the consumers, and also to provide assurance of fair practices in food trade. At the time of CAC’s inception, 16 countries observed our activities, and now the figure has reached 222. Its budget was increased by 150 percent during the conference in Rome. Consensus building has been the main purpose. We have formulated around 4,000 standards, which has been a phenomenal task. We are also encouraging all the countries to harmonize with Codex. Standards have been developed on the basis of science to make it truly global.”

K Chandramouli, chairman of FSSAI, said, “I am very happy that CAC has just completed its 50th year. While speaking to me in the morning, Dave excitedly said that the celebrations, which started today, will continue till Codex’s 61st year. The work of the Codex committee is increasing by leaps and bounds. It is important to involve producers, manufacturers, distributors, industries and consumers for the security of food.”