Calls for harmonization of spice standards to ensure quality and safety.

The 7th session of the Codex Commission on Spices and Culinary Herbs (CCSCH) began with a focus on developing standards for six spices, including allspice, juniper berries, star anise, vanilla, turmeric and cardamom. The development of these standards is crucial to ensure quality, safety and fair trade practices in the global spice market. The 7th session which started in Kochi is the global grand event of spices and herbs.

CCSCH is an international body dedicated to setting quality standards for spices and herbs worldwide. It is the only commission chaired and hosted under the CODEX Alimentarius Commission (CAC) of India. The CAC is a joint FAO-WHO body that leads intergovernmental efforts to develop globally recognized standards for spice quality and safety based on scientific evidence.

Amardeep Singh Bhatia, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, in his opening speech emphasized the role of spices in global trade and the need for harmonized standards to ensure quality and safety. Quality standards should facilitate trade and countries should ensure that these standards do not become barriers to trade. Standards must be robust enough to stand the test of time and standards must be globally harmonized. CCSCH President Mr. Sudharshan delivered the opening remarks for the session, which also happens to be the committee’s 10th anniversary. Spices Board Secretary D. Sathiyan welcomed the meeting.

Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) President Steve Wearne, in his recorded message, appreciated the work of the CCSCH and emphasized its importance in global food trade and consumer protection. In 2024, CCSCH will be 10 years old. During the past decade, the committee developed standards approved by the Codex Alimentarius Commission for 11 spices during six sessions.

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