The elaboration of Codex Standards generally follows an eight-step procedure that allows member countries and relevant international organizations several opportunities for comment, including comments related to implications of the Standard for their economic interests.
CAC committees work under 3 categories;
• Horizontal committees
• Vertical committees
• Regional committees
1- Horizontal Committees
Horizontal Committees deal with the issues on food safety.
• Committee on Labelling (Canada),
• General Principles (France)
• Committee on Contaminants (Netherlands),
• Committee on Food Additives (People’s Republic of China),
• Committee on Food Hygiene (USA),
• Committee on Certification Systems of Food Import and Export (Australia),
• Committee on Sampling and Analysing Methods (Hungary),
• Committee on Food for Specific Nutrition Purposes (Germany),
• Committee on Pesticide Residues (People’s Republic of China),
• Committee on the Residues of Veterinary Medicinal Products (USA)
2- Vertical Committees
Vertical Committees deal with the issues on products and product groups.
• Committee on Cereals, Legumes and Similar Products with Vegetable Proteins (USA),
• Committee on Fat and Oil and Relevant Products (Malaysia),
• Committee on Fish and Fisheries (Norway),
• Committee on Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (Mexico),
• Committee on Processed Fruits and Vegetables (USA),
• Committee on Meat Hygiene (New Zealand),
• Committee on Milk and Dairy Products (New Zealand),
• Committee on Sweets (England),
• Committee on Cocoa Products and Chocolate (Switzerland)
• Committee on Natural Mineral Waters (Switzerland)
• Committee on Vegetable Proteins (Canada)
3- Regional Committees
Regional Committees deal with the issues on the elaboration of regional food standards.
Coordination committees are as follows;
• Africa (Ghana),
• Asia (Indonesia),
• Europe (Poland),
• Latin America and Caribbean Isles (Mexico),
• Near East (Tunisia),
• North America and Southwest Pacific (Tonga)
4- Expert Boards:
Experts Boards deal with the issues on risk assessment.
• Experts Board on Pesticide Residues (JMPR),
• Experts Board on Food Additives (JECFA),
• Experts Board on Microbiological Risk Assessment (JEMRA),
• Experts Board on Nutrition (JEMNU).
CAC Procedural Rules
CAC Procedural Rules constitute and define the working procedures for an international organization. The Rules explain the followings:
• Terms for commission membership,
• Appointment of Commission officials consisting of one Chairman, 3 Deputy Chairman, regional coordinators and one secretary, as well as defining their responsibility,
• Establishment of a Steering Body acting in the name of Commission and providing coordination among Commission sessions,
• Frequency and working of Commission sessions,
• Structure of the Commission sessions’ agenda,
• Voting procedure,
• Preparation of commission reports and records,
• Establishment of subsidiary bodies,
• Procedure to be followed in the implementation of standards,
• Making the accounts of expenditures and allocation of a budget,
• Languages to be used by the Commission.
Special standards within Codex Alimentarius cover the following products:
• Cereals, legumes and similar products with vegetable proteins,
• Fat-oil and relevant products,
• Fish and fish products,
• Fresh fruits and vegetables,
• Processed and Frozen fruits and vegetables,
• Fruit juices,
• Meat and meat products; soups and broth,
• Milk and dairy products,
• Sweets, cocoa products, chocolate and other miscellaneous products.
Product standards are defined in a specific format in CAC Procedural Guidebook. This format covers the information such as scope, definition, basic composition, food additives, contaminants, hygiene, weight and measures, labelling, sampling and analysing methods.