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GCC: Meat import procedures to be tightened further

18/10/11  www.gulf-times.com


The GCC Standardisation Organisation would take steps to further tighten procedures regarding imported meat, undersecretary at laboratories and standardisation affairs Mohamed bin Saif al-Kuwari has said.


Talking to Qatar News Agency after delivering an opening speech at a training course on food safety management, which kicked off on Monday under the patronage of HE the Minister of Environment Abdullah bin Mubarak bin Aboud al-Midhadhi, al-Kuwari said these procedures required new laws and legislation that oblige countries that export meat to the GCC states to slaughter animals according to the Islamic law and Gulf standards.


He added that the course would include a recommendation that the Halal stamp should clearly indicate that the meat has been slaughtered according to the Islamic law.


Participants in the course, being held at the Wyndham Grand Regency Hotel in Doha, would be briefed on the procedures to be followed in the slaughter of animals and methods of issuing certificates of conformity which must be approved by the GCC embassies in the meat exporting countries.


The course focuses on food safety management system (procedures for granting and accreditation of conformity assessment certificates for halal and organic food. 
The course aims at raising awareness regarding specifications and laboratories as well as the training level which could have a good impact in upgrading the quality of products in GCC countries.


Regarding organic food, al-Kuwari said in the statement that the GCC Standardisation Organisation intends to issue new legislation recommending manufacturers of food products to classify these products according to their nature. 
In response to a question on the procedures that will be taken by Qatar on this issue, al-Kuwari said that Qatar’s Joint Committee for Food Inspection and other authorities concerned,  particularly the private sector, would study  the GCC legislation on food safety as well as the procedures for granting certificates of conformity for halal and organic food products.
The course is organised by the Ministry of Environment’s Laboratories and Standardisation Affairs division in partnership with GCC Standardisation Organisation.

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