Tuesday, February 10, 2009

UAE prepares camel milk specifications

Dubai Municipality, along with the Emirates Standardization and Metrology Authority (ESMA), participated in the Codex Alimentarius Commission Middle East regional meeting held recently in Tunis, where the UAE presented a project on specifications for camel milk.
This was a first of its kind specifications prepared by the UAE to participate in a regional or international meeting, said Khalid Sharif, Director of Food Control Department, who participated in the meeting representing the Municipality along with Maha Suwaikat Al Hajiri, Head of Food and Environment Laboratory Section in the Dubai Central Laboratory Department.
The meeting was attended by a number of food safety officials from the near east countries.
The Codex Alimentarius Commission was created in 1963 by FAO and WHO to develop food standards, guidelines and related texts such as codes of practice under the Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme.
"The specifications for camel milk were prepared by Dubai Municipality in cooperation with ESMA, Emirates Industry for Camel Milk & Products and the Central Veterinary Research Laboratory in Dubai. The significance of these specifications comes as an embodiment of the care given by the nation, represented by its leaders, to camels that form the cultural legacy of the GCC nations," said Sharif.
He said the camel milk products are distinct with many excellent characteristics that have made it a rich product, developed after extensive scientific research.
"These specifications are considered to be unique in the country in protecting products with cultural imprints," Sharif said, adding that the country has manufacturers of camel milk in Dubai and Al Ain.
"The UAE has taken up the task of preparing specifications for camel milk through ESMA and other bodies specialized in approving international specifications," said Sharif.
The Codex Middle East regional meeting gave approval to these specifications on camel milk.
The meeting also discussed some of the issues related to the strategic plan of Codex, a number of suggested specifications, the joint activities between the FAO and WHO such as holding workshops in food safety and approving advanced food control systems and their adoption by some countries that need to enhance their food safety competency.

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