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Acceptance, Control of and Trade in Irradiated Food.

Acceptance, Control of and Trade in Irradiated Food

This soft cover text forms the Proceedings of a conference held in Geneva in December 1988. The event was jointly organized by FAO, WHO, IAEA, ITC-UNCTAD/GATT.

So far more than thirty countries have approved more than forty different irradiated food items for human consumption. Some are on a conditional basis and commercial or semi commercial scale irradiation has been implemented in twenty-one countries so far. With all this activity, it can only be a matter of time before irradiated food becomes significant item in international trade. However, with the lack of harmonization of national regulations and some uncertainties regarding the acceptance of irradiated foods, both by governments and consumers, such trade may well be inhibited. One can visualize the situation where a government that does not see the need for such technology in its own country could hamper its use in another country.

In view of the above state of affairs the five organizations mentioned above set up this conference to discuss the problems. 220 delegates from fiftyseven member States participated and thirtyfive representatives of fourteen observer organizations were present. Participants heard no fewer than seven opening addresses and these were followed by seven Keynote addresses. The titles of these addresses were: The wholesomeness of irradiated foods; Food irradiation and its contribution to public health; Food irradiation - a contribution to security; Impact of technological advances in food processing and preservation, in particular irradiation, on international food trade; Regulatory control of food irradiation process for consumer protection; Avis de l'industrie alimentaire sur l'application de l'ionisation; and Consumer views on acceptance of irradiated food.

An unscheduled seminar was organised to allow consumer representatives to gain answers to certain questions, and the plenary sessions of the conference were devoted to the discussion and drafting of an International Document on food irradiation. There were also statements by official participants on behalf of their governments and by observers concerning the international document.
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Author:Binsted, Howard
Publication:Food Trade Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Dec 1, 1989
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