WHO calls for action to totally eliminate trans fat, ‘a toxic chemical that kills’

Industrially produced trans fat – commonly found in packaged foods, baked goods, cooking oils and spreads – is responsible for up to 500,000 premature deaths from coronary heart disease each year, the UN agency said.

WHO has released a status report that follows up on its 2018 call for the substance to be totally eliminated from all foods by this year.

Codex – Codex Alimentarius Commission: 21-25 November 2022

The United Nations food standards body, the Codex Alimentarius Commission, met both physically and virtually from November 21-25, 2022, to adopt food quality and safety standards. The Commission’s report will be adopted virtually from December 12-13, 2022.

  • Revision to the Standard for Named Vegetable Oils – Sunflower Seed Oil (CXS 210-1999).  ADOPTED- 21.11.2022
  • Guidelines for Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Foods (RUTF). ADOPTED- 21.11.2022
  • Guidelines for the Management of Biological Foodborne Outbreaks. ADOPTED- 21.11.2022
  • Revision to the General Principles of Food Hygiene (CXC 1-1969). ADOPTED- 21.11.2022
  • Maximum Levels for Aflatoxins in Certain Cereals and Cereal-Based Products including Foods for Infants and Young Children. ADOPTED- 22.11.2022
  • Guidelines for Compounds of Low Public Health Concern that May Be Exempted from the Establishment of Codex MRLs. ADOPTED- 23.11.2022
  • Standard for Chilli Peppers and Paprika. ADOPTED- 23.11.2022
  • Guidelines for developing harmonized food safety legislation for the Africa region. ADOPTED- 23.11.2022

©FAO/Giulio Napolitano

Codex – New Codex guidelines pave the way for innovation for ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF)

Codex guidelines for ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF) were adopted at the 45th session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission on 21 November and are set to pave the way for new innovative versions of the life-saving product. They will also enable governments to regulate safety effectively as manufacturers scale up production to tackle the malnutrition crisis affecting millions of children, especially in Africa and Asia.

WHO – Evaluation of certain food additives and contaminants: ninety-first report of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives

The ninety-first meeting of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) was convened by video-conference from 1 to 12 February 2021. The meeting was opened on behalf of the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) by Mr Jamie Morrison (Director of the Food Systems and Food Safety Division) and on behalf of the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) by Mr Kim Petersen (Programme Manager, Department of Nutrition and Food Safety). Mr Morrison in his opening remarks welcomed all meeting participants, and stressed that, despite the challenges of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the work of JECFA had progressed and continued to provide sound scientific advice to Codex and the Member States, largely thanks to the efforts and work of the JECFA experts. He reminded the participants about their responsibility to impart the most unbiased and best scientific advice possible, and that they had been invited to serve solely in their capacity as scientific experts to provide sound scientific advice and not as representatives of their employer or country. He closed by reiterating his sincere gratitude to all participants for providing their time and expertise to this JECFA meeting.