Agreement to boost preparations for meet

Fiji will host the 16th Session of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and World Health Organization CCNASWP meeting, from January 30 to February 3, 2023 in Nadi. Picture: SUPPLIED

THE upcoming Codex Committee for North America and South West Pacific (CCNASWP) agenda will include key items such as progressing the draft regional standard for fermented noni juice and implementation of the Codex Regional Kava Standard.

A statement from the Australia and New Zealand supported Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access Plus Program (PHAMA Plus) said Fiji would host the 16th Session of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and World Health Organization CCNASWP meeting, scheduled to be held from January 30 to February 3, 2023 in Nadi.

The permanent secretary for Agriculture, Dr Vinesh Kumar said as regional coordinator, Fiji would continue supporting work on these regional standards to strengthen participation of the region in Codex Alimentarius in general.

“These initiatives support improvements to our regional kava and noni products to a significant level of Codex standards and ensure that exports are safe and of the expected quality required by international markets,” Dr Kumar said.

“We’re pleased to be collaborating with PHAMA Plus to prepare for this important CCNASWP meeting, drawing on technical and regional support to build and maintain the capacity of member countries to productively participate in, and benefit from, Codex processes including the development and use of food safety standards.”

According to the statement the Fiji Government through the Ministry of Agriculture was appointed as Regional Coordinator for North America and South West Pacific Region in 2019.

It said to support its role as Regional Coordinator for CCNASWP, the Ministry of Agriculture signed an agreement with PHAMA Plus to boost preparations for the upcoming meeting.

PHAMA Plus program manager biosecurity, quality and standards, Lennard Powell said Fiji was well versed with co-ordinating regional issues and bringing them to the attention of the Codex Alimentarius Commission.

“PHAMA Plus will commit to supporting the CCNASWP Regional Coordinator in terms of mentoring and capacity building and logistical support for national Codex contact points,” he said.

“The CCNASWP will also provide an opportunity to mutually support and progress regional strategies that show the commitment from all countries on the work of Codex and food safety, especially in our region.”

The CCNASWP brings together member countries in North America and the South West Pacific every two years to discuss national and regional issues related to food safety and food trade.

These include Canada, USA, Australia, Cook Islands, FSM, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, NZ, PNG, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu.

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