Global food standard-setting body Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) adopted three Codex standards for black, white and green pepper, cumin and thyme paving the way for a universal agreement on identifying quality spices in various countries. These three Codex standards were adopted at CAC’s recent meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.
Benefits of Codex Standards:
Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the adoption of these standards will imply that there will be now reference points and benchmarks for the 188 CAC member-countries for trade of these spices.
- She added that the move will bring harmony to the global spice trade and ensure availability of high quality, clean and safe spices to the world.
About Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) and its Relevance:
The Codex Alimentarius or “Food Code” is a collection of standards, guidelines and codes of practice adopted by the Codex Alimentarius Commission.
- The Commission, also known as CAC, is the central part of the joint FAO (Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations) and WHO (World Health Organisation) Food Standards Programme.
- It was established in November 1961.
- The commission was formed to protect consumer health and promote fair practices in food trade.
India’s Role in Setting up Codex Committee of CAC:
It was in 2013 that the need for Codex standards for spices and herbs became a matter of concern, owing to the increased level of issues in spice trade.
- At that time, there was no Codex committee exclusively for spices and culinary herbs.
- Spices Board India submitted to CAC a proposal for such an exclusive committee for spices and culinary herbs.
- India conducted three sessions of Codex Committee on Spices and Culinary Herbs (CCSCH) at Kochi (2014), Goa (2015) and Chennai (2017).