International Policy Stay abreast of international science, policy, and standards activities and join IFT in contributing to harmonization of food laws and regulations on a global level

Updated March 14, 2017

Codex Alimentarius Commission
The Codex Alimentarius Commission is the international organization created by the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization and World Health Organization to develop food standards, guidelines and other texts under the Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme to protect the health of consumers and ensure fair practices in food trade. As a nongovernment organization with observer status IFT participates in meetings of select Codex committees and task forces, represented by IFT Codex Subject Experts.

Codex Meeting Reports

Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA)
JECFA is an international expert scientific committee administered jointly by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO). JECFA serves as an independent scientific committee which performs risk assessments on food additives, contaminants, naturally occurring toxicants and residues of veterinary drugs in food and provides advice for the Codex Alimentarius Commission and its specialist committees.

JECFA Meeting Report

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
With the mandate of raising levels of nutrition, improving agricultural productivity, bettering the lives of rural populations, and contributing to the growth of the world economy, FAO serves as a knowledge network, shares policy expertise, provides a neutral meeting forum for nations, and brings technical knowledge to the field.

World Health Organization
As the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations, WHO provides leadership on global health matters, shapes the health research agenda, sets norms and standards, articulates evidence-based policy options, provides technical support to countries, and monitors and assesses health trends.

World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)
OIE is the intergovernmental organization responsible for improving animal health worldwide. OIE develops international standards on animal health and welfare, designed to prevent and control animal diseases, including zoonoses, ensure sanitary safety of world trade in terrestrial and aquatic animals and animal products, and improve animal welfare. OIE collects and analyzes scientific information on prevention and control of animal diseases, which it makes available to its member countries.

European Food Safety Authority
The EFSA is a scientific risk assessment body of the European Union, providing scientific advice on food and feed safety, nutrition, animal health, plant protection, and plant health. Select reports are provided below.

Food Chemicals Codex
The FCC is a compendium of internationally recognized standards for the authenticity, purity and identity of food ingredients. The compendium features about 1,100 monographs, including food-grade chemicals, processing aids, foods, flavoring agents, vitamins, and functional food ingredients, as well as informational chapters to aid the analyst on topics such as adulteration, analytical methods and more. The FCC plays a key role in safeguarding commerce and public health by providing essential criteria and analytical methods to authenticate and determine the quality of food ingredients. FCC standards are beneficial to all players in the food industry as agreed standards between suppliers and manufacturers aid in distinguishing genuine products from inferior or adulterated ingredients and substances, thereby helping to make the food supply chain safer and assuring consumers of the quality of the food products they eat. International Organization for Standardization
ISO develops and publishes international standards relating to, in the food system, topics including food ingredients, food safety and quality, and nanotechnology through a network of national member standards institutes of 162 countries.

Other Organizations

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Food Standards Australia New Zealand

Health Canada

U.K. Food Standards Agency

U.K. Department of Health

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development


Call for Data

In support of discussions in the Codex Committee on Food Hygiene and for sufficiently representative global perspective, JEMRA (Joint FAO/WHO Expert Meetings on Microbiological Risk Assessment) continues to seek through April published and unpublished data from health surveillance and assurance programs for STEC (Shiga toxin-producing E. coli). Details are available here.

FAO/WHO are collecting data and information through the GEMS/Food Programme on levels and trends of chemicals in food, to support the FAO/WHO scientific advice program. The list of substances of focus and other details are available at: http://www.who.int/foodsafety/CFD-ScientificAdvice-2017.pdf. Data are due June 30.