International food regulatory bodies meet in Delhi

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New Delhi, Senior experts from leading international food regulatory bodies like FAO, CODEX Alimentarius Commission, European Commission and various countries from different regions of the world are converging in New Delhi on April 10 and 11 to discuss several key issues that are globally emerging and relevant for the food sector.

They include the Chief, Food Quality and Standards Service, Food and Nutrition Division, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN, two Vice Chairpersons of the Codex Alimentarius Commission and senior representatives from different Country regulatory authorities such as Brazil, Europe, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, UK, USA etc.

These experts will participate in a two-day International Food Regulatory Summit being organized by the Confederation of the Indian Industry in cooperation with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.Dr Anbumani Ramdoss, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare will open the Summit.

Several senior authorities from different ministries and food regulatory, quality and safety experts are also slated to participate in the summit.

The summit is being organised against the backdrop of the recently enacted Food Safety and Standards Act, which, by its inherent characteristics, provides a major opportunity to India to revisit its current food regulatory regime to ensure that the Indian consumers get high-quality and safe food.India has the potential to become a reliable outsourcing partner in the Food sector.

The Indian food sector is estimated to be worth over 200 billion dollars and is expected to grow to 310 billion dollars by 2015. It also contributes to a major part of the retail basket. The food retail sector is also growing at a hefty nine percent.A breed of foreign taste masters are currently operating in India. Indian food brands are now increasingly finding prime shelf space in the Retail chains in many countries.

As the food business is growing beyond borders in the new WTO regime, nations are replacing their tariff barriers with more complicated non-tariff barriers and quality and safety considerations have acquired centre stage.The summit is being organised with the specific objective of building a common ground in India for food regulations.

The Food Regulatory regime in India, while meeting the inherent consumer safety aspects, need to move towards a more flexible and a globally aligned regime, which, on the one hand fosters speedy innovations and on the other hand,enables Indian Food businesses to achieve global competitiveness with respect to price, quality and delivered to markets and hence a higher participation in international food trade.

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