Food meet focuses on safety

National, Normal

The National, Friday 21st September 2012

THE importance of food safety systems and the laws governing them will be discussed, among other issues, in Madang during a four-day Codex Conference meeting.
The 12th Codex meeting was officially opened by Agriculture Minister Tommy Tomscoll on Wednesday.
Tomscoll commended developed countries on their ‘raised’ standards with regards to food quality but said these standards should not become deterrents for Pacific countries.
“It is imperative that these standards do not act as tariffs and barriers to our trade and development,” he said.
“Our economy over the past decade has recorded high consecutive growth rates at 8% and this is expected to continue.
“These are remarkable achievements comparing current global trends of 4% and less.”
Reiterating the country’s challenges on staple traditional diets being replaced by convenience foods, Tomscoll admitted the status of food standard and safety were numerous, diverse and dissimilar.
He said there was a need for the quality experts to seriously look at promoting the development of standards for food products produced in the Pacific countries.
There will be discussion papers on the importance of kava, noni and galip nuts in relation to their economical viability and the diversity in quality standards these plants have.