30th August , 2017 , Hits: 2148
Kampala, August 29th, 2017 – Delegates from 187 countries are expected to meet in Kampala, from 2nd to 6th October, 2017 at Imperial Royale Hotel, to discuss standards for fresh fruits and vegetables including garlic, potatoes and eggplants, kiwi fruits and fresh dates.
Over 200 delegates are expected to participate in the 20th Session of the Codex Committee on Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (CCFFV) which will be hosted by the Government of Uganda together with the Government of Mexico. As the custodian of national standards, the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) is coordinating the meeting preparations.
Speaking at a press conference to brief the media about the meeting preparations, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives (MTIC), Hon. Amelia Kyambadde, said: “Fresh fruits and vegetables are part of the agricultural value chain which contributes about 26 % of the total Gross Domestic Product (GDP).”
Fresh fruits and vegetables from Uganda are mainly exported to the European Union (United Kingdom, German, Belgium and Netherlands), Middle East, USA and the East African Community (EAC) region. Statistics from Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) show that in 2015 Uganda exported 7,900 tonnes of fruits worth USD3.2 million and 12,000 tonnes of vegetables worth USD127 million.
“Although trade in fresh fruits and vegetable has been growing steadily over the last five years, Ugandans have continued to face challenges penetrating the lucrative international markets due to non-compliance to international standards,” Hon. Kyambadde said.
“Hosting the international meeting on standards for fresh fruits and vegetables will enable sharing of information and best practices in production of the commodities which will go a long way in improving international trade,” Hon. Kyambadde said.
The Minister of Health, Dr. Ruth Jane Aceng said: “The meeting comes at a time when the Government is in the process of streamlining the national food control system in order to respond to current and emerging food safety issues.”
Dr. Aceng added: “Uganda has a fully established and functional Codex structure that is multisectoral in nature, and takes lead in advising government on matters of food safety in the country. We have put in place mechanisms to ensure that the mandate of Codex Alimentarius (CAC) of ensuring consumer health protection and fair trade practices is realized in the country.”
Uganda is a member of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC), an international food standards body which was formed by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) is a statutory body responsible for developing and promoting standards and quality of products and services to facilitate fair trade, promote local industries and protect consumers.
For more information, please contact:
Godwin Bonge Muhwezi
Principal Public Relations Officer
Uganda National Bureau of Standards
Bweyogerere Industrial Park,
Plot 2 - 12, Kyaliwajala Road,
P.O Box 6329 Kampala, Uganda