Evaluate the Food Safety Commission!

Posted on June 10, 2008. Filed under: Japan Resources |

Japan does not have any equivalent to the US Food and Drug Administration, and there is no Commissioner for Health and Consumer Affairs like in the European Union. Yet, recent events have shown that food safety is a huge concern among consumers in Japan.

The independent watchdog, Food Safety Citizens’ Watch meets regularly and discusses important topics. As Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda announced that the Government would establish a consumer agency, the FSCW wants to point out that there has been no proper evaluation of the roles played by Japan’s Food Safety Commission and the Fundamental law for food safety in protecting the citizens’ health and guaranteeing the safety of our food. Before creating a new consumer administrative body, FSCW believes it is necessary to impartiality evaluate the current achievements, pointing out both the positive and negative aspects.

In a special resolution, FSCW therefore requests that the present Food Safety Commission should be thoroughly evaluated before a new Consumer Agency is established.

Special Resolution:
Evaluate the Food Safety Commission before Establishing a Consumer Agency

At a meeting with the government panel on consumer issues on April 23, 2008, Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda announced that the Government would establish a consumer agency the next fiscal year. This new body will reportedly have authority over all consumer-related issues including food safety, and will operate as a “control tower” over consumer protection with competence for planning, legal execution and advising. However, the Government decided that the relevant members from existing consumer-related government bodies would be unified within the consumer agency’s structure, wanting to deflect criticism for making the government bigger.

In this context, we want to point out that there has been no proper evaluation of the roles played by the Food Safety Commission and the Fundamental law for food safety in protecting the citizens’ health and guaranteeing the safety of our food. Before creating a new consumer administrative body, we believe it is necessary to impartiality evaluate the current achievements, pointing out both the positive and negative aspects.

We therefore request that the present Food Safety Commission should be thoroughly evaluated before a new Consumer Agency is established.

– Adopted by the participants at the sixth annual general meeting of Food Safety Citizens’ Watch on April 26, 2008

Food Safety Citizens’ Watch was established in April 2003 as a network of experts to monitor developments and make proposals to the government regarding food safety issues from the citizen’s point of view.

English Newsletter Website: Food Safety Citizens’ Watch

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