KAMPALA - The EAC is working on ways to harmonise food safety standards among partner states with a view to establishing a regional mechanism to coordinate the activities of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC).
CAC is an intergovernmental body with over 170 members, within the framework of the joint food standards programme, established with the purpose of protecting the health of consumers and ensuring fair practices in the food trade.
As a build up to these efforts, food scientists and experts from all EAC states are holding a five-day meeting in Kampala to come up with a regional codex forum.
Francis Musinguzi, an official with the Rwanda Animal Resources Development Authority (RARDA), said that the move will limit any poor quality food products that may be circulating on the East African market.
“We are reviewing the draft document on how all partner states can have the same standards when it comes to passing food products to the market. From here, it will be easy to deal with the Codex arrangement,”
Moses Malwa, the EAC Principal Agricultural Officer, said that the Codex forum will assist partner states to implement decisions taken by the international codex meetings in a coordinated and harmonious manner.
“These are all efforts geared towards improving the quality of our products as well as making trading easier since there will be mutual recognition of the products by all the states,” Malwa said in an interview yesterday.
The codex forum will also facilitate discussions among partner states regarding the EAC secretariat’s participation in Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) as an observer.