What is Codex Alimentarius?
If I were to say ‘Food Code’ in latin, I’d call it Codex Alimentarius. Simply put, it is a collection of internationally recognized standards, codes of practice, guidelines, and other recommendations relating to foods, it’s production & safety.
Its texts are developed and maintained by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, a body that was established in November of 1961 by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, was joined by the World Health Organization (WHO) in June of 1962, and held its first session in Rome in October of 1963. Officially, it’s main goals are to protect the health of consumers and ensure fair practices in the international food trade & therefore serves as a ‘Food Court’ or in other words, a reference point for the resolution of disputes concerning food safety and consumer protection.
As of 2012, there were 186 members of the Codex Alimentarius Commission: 186 member countries and one member organization, the European Union (EU). There were 215 Codex observers: 49 intergovernmental organizations, 150 non-governmental organizations, and 16 United Nations organizations.
How Does It affect ME & YOU ?
If I were to break it down to you in simple, easy to grasp terms, Codex Alimentarius pretty much determines what you consume in the name of food, how that ‘food’ is going to be procured, treated & traded internationally. The ‘treatment’ of all dairy cattle, sea animals, live stock, vegetation etc with antibiotics & other harmful drugs are not only sanctioned but MANDATED by this international regulatory body you know absolutely nothing about. So unless your supply chain is local, you can be absolutely sure that the food you’re consuming is loaded with antibiotics, growth hormones and what not, thanks to a mandatory regulation passed by Codex Alimentarius, making it absolutely necessary for all food to be treated with the aforementioned drugs. That’s because the Codex Alimentarius covers all foods, whether processed, semi-processed or raw. In addition to standards for specific foods, the Codex Alimentarius contains general standards covering matters such as food labeling, food hygiene, food additives and pesticide residues, and procedures for assessing the safety of foods derived from modern biotechnology. It also contains guidelines for governmental import and export inspection and certification systems for foods.
Apart from governing your food consumption, Codex Alimentarius also sets the standard for classification of nutrients, herbs, vitamins, minerals etc . In 1996 the German delegation put forward a proposal that no herb, vitamin or mineral should be sold for preventive or therapeutic reasons, and that supplements should be reclassified as drugs. The proposal was agreed, but protests halted its implementation. The 28th Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission was subsequently held July 4–9, 2005.
Among the many issues discussed were the Guidelines for Vitamin and Mineral Food Supplements,which were adopted during the meeting as new global safety guidelines: The guidelines state that “people should…be encouraged to select a balanced diet from food before considering any vitamin and mineral supplement. In cases where the intake from the diet is insufficient or where consumers consider their diet requires supplementation, vitamin and mineral food supplements serve to supplement the daily diet. This text has been the subject of considerable controversy among proponents of dietary supplements. Many countries regulate such substances as therapeutic goods or pharmaceuticals or by some other category, without requiring them to be shown to be medically useful.
What this implies is that these guidelines mandate restrictive upper limits on the dosage or consumption of vitamins & minerals & seeks to discredit the claim that vitamin & mineral supplementation is, in fact, significant in the prevention, alleviation & treatment of ailments.
What Influence Does It Hold In The Food Regulatory Practices In MY Country?
While in theory, the adoption of regulations & practices prescribed by Codex Alimentarius remains optional, the creation of the World Trade Organization in January of 1995 changed all that as the WTO endorses these standards as the benchmark in resolving International Trade Disputes involving food. The potential threat of losing in such trade disputes makes the adoption of these guidelines mandatory for member countries, thus in reality, losing their autonomy in the matter of adopting or declining to adopt Codex guidelines. The fact that a total of 149 nations, including India, are members of the WTO, it is only logical to assume that a vast majority of the population on our planet is directly affected by these regulations and policies.
If Not The General Population, Who Is Codex Alimentarius Designed To Benefit?
The pharmaceutical & medical industry. You see, disease is big business. The aim of alopathy, or modern medicine, is to cure the symptoms rather than the disease. Imagine the kind of money that will vanish from the health trade if people wake up & realize the power of holistic healing which by the way, if widely frowned upon under codex guidelines. Adopted in 1979, & revised in 1991, Codex General Guidelines On Claims place severe restrictions upon natural or holistic forms of healing endorsing pharmaceutical drugs as the only way to cure illness & discrediting all natural forms of healthcare. It also prohibits support for the claim that our normal diets cannot provide all the vital nutrients needed for disease prevention, therefore labeling naturally found nutritive elements as drugs.
I Consume Organic Food. Should I Worry?
Please do. Because in recent years, Codex has begun taking keen interest in the Organic Food Industry & it has now become increasingly evident, that Codex Alimentarius is working towards decreasing the standard for the same by allowing the use of carcinogenic (cancer causing) substances like sodium nitrite & nitrate, sulphur dioxide which potentially could cause allergic reactions in some people & carageenan which has been linked to ulcers & cancerous tumors in the intestines. The Comission has recently given the nod to artificially induce organically grown fruits & vegetables with ethylene to ripen faster.
Codex support for GMOs or genetically modified food has also grown over the years. Seeds for GMOs can be patented unlike the seeds for regular foods & this explains in part, why biotechnological companies are in such rigorous pursuit to have these foods forced on the global market. And since Codex regulates food labelling too, if the proposed texts are adopted, which they most assuredly will be, companies will no longer be required to label the presence of GM organisms on their edible products.
Also, Codex has specific committees that deal with food additives & pesticide residues. The effects of permitted additives & pesticide residues is considered generally, ignoring the long-term health effects of these permitted substances found in the food we consume on a daily basis.
There is ample research & testimonies of scientists & doctors that point to Codex Alimentarius being an aide to the pharmaceutical industry on the inside while carrying out the facade of having the ‘best interest of the people’ on the outside.
An important video to watch on the subject has been shared below
While it’s quite blissful to live in a state of utter ignorance, it can be empowering to gain knowledge, seek control of our lives be propellants for change.