WASHINGTON – Members of the Food Industry Codex Coalition (FICC), including the American Meat Institute, commended the US Codex on its leadership and called for continued support of organization.

“Although there remains much work to do following the outcomes on certain key issues, including Ractopamine, it was clear that proactive US outreach, education and communication efforts helped build a strong coalition of Codex delegations committed to supporting the scientific basis of Codex standards and the WHO/FAO expert committees,” stated the letter sent to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Although fiscal 2011 US Agricultural Exports are forecasted to reach a record of $137 billion, these exports are still restricted by non-science-based measures that block market access for safe, high-quality US food and agricultural products, the coalition charged. Science-based and harmonized international standards will open these markets, resulting in expanding US exports and increasing jobs.

“Strong US leadership and resources to support Codex are critical to achieving these goals,” the letter stated.“ FICC urges continued, strong support of US engagement with Codex, including adequate and dedicated resources to continue international outreach efforts aimed at building support for science-based decision-making that will help US positions prevail in international standard-setting bodies and enhance US agricultural and food export,” the letter concluded.

Click here to read the letter.