Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Reforming Food Law in China

Barely a day goes by in China without news of yet another food safety scandal. This situation is seriously affecting not only the Chinese’s sentiment of trust towards their local products but it is also disrupting the economic viability of their entire food supply chain. As a result, the Chinese newly-elected leaders are consulting extensively to reform their highly-fragmented and historically reactive food safety system.

Read Alberto Alemanno article on this situation here.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Chinese ban benzoyl peroxide and calcium peroxide as food additives

According to China Daily, on March 1 Chinese authorities banned the production of two food additives used to bleach flour. The additives, benzoyl peroxide and calcium peroxide, were banned because "there is no need to use them in flour processing anymore" as the country's processing techniques and wheat planting have improved, the ministry said in a statement on its website.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Indian Supreme Court bans industry from advisory committee

FoodProductionDaily reports that the Indian Food Safety and Standards Authority (FSSA) has been blocked from including representatives from the food and beverage industry in a scientific panel set up to advise on safety and standards.The Indian Supreme Court found that involvement of food industry figures breached the Food Safety and Standards Act because such panels could not be said to be manned by independent experts.

"We are sorry to say that the panel does not consist of independent persons. It is contrary to the [Food Safety and Standards] Act." stated the ruling.The ruling stated that representatives from the relevant industry and consumer representatives could be invited for deliberations but could not form part of the body giving recommendations.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

China, Japan, South Korea sign food safety pact

In the wake of concern over Chinese-made food exports, health minister from the three countries signed the accord in Tokyo. The three nations agreed to notify each other immediately if a food safety problem surfaces and to clarify the process of investigation. FoodProductivity.com (25-Nov-2009).

Saturday, November 14, 2009

From Obama Foodorama, a nice report on President Obama’s arrival last night in Singapore and attendance at the Gala Dinner at the APEC Summit. “Last night, President ending leaders were given traditional garb for the dinner, and had a choice between red shirts and blue. President Obama, of course, chose blue. APEC is the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, and has 21 member countries. One of the primary goals of this week's meeting is the development of a region-wide free trade area, which would account for half the world's imports and exports if it becomes a reality. During meetings over the past few days, leaders have been discussing ending all restrictions on food trade, which is a huge percentage of the economic pie. It's also something that is problematic, in part due to food safety problems . . .”

Above, at dinner: President Obama with, from left, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Japan's Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, China's President Hu Jintao, New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key, Mexico's President Felipe Calderon.

Monday, September 14, 2009

EU Training on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Issues for Asian Countries

EU Training on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Issues for Asian Countries provides links to seminar slides organised by the European Commission Directorate General for TRADE in cooperation with the Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG SANCO).  Although aimed at improving mutual understanding of Sanitary and Phytosanitary issues and relevant legislation between the EU and administrators from Asian countries, the materials are applicable generally on SPS issues in the EU and globally.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Standards and Agricultural Trade in Asia

A paper by Daniele Giovannucci and Timothy Purcell  is posted on SSRN here.


Abstract: The markets for agri-food products are changing at a pace that is unparalleled in modern history. Markets are increasingly open and also increasingly homogenized toward international tastes and requirements for levels of quality, packaging, safety, and even process attributes such as socially or environmentally friendly methods.


New distribution channels, dominated by larger firms, including supermarket retailers, are imposing high performance demands on their value chains. In order to respond to these increasing demands, developing countries are facing an inexorable shift toward more industrialized models of farming systems. This shift presents new challenges for small and medium farmers' access to markets and their ability to compete. The question for many countries-and not just developing countries-is what options are there for small farmers, which still comprise the great majority of the world's agricultural producers? The key for many is to understand and learn how to collectively achieve new levels of standards.