2011 Spring - A private future for food and fibre quality

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FPJ0803 - Gale, HF, Hu, D - China’s food quality challenge

The 21st century modernisation of China’s food system has led to major upheaval in a country where most of the population is only one generation removed from subsistence agriculture. China’s food processing and retail sectors have grown at an extremely rapid pace since the 1990s, but agriculture remains dominated by small-scale farms. This article discusses the quality and safety problems arising from the lack of coordination between agricultural producers, processors and retailers. It describes quality problems that emerged in the export of apple juice concentrate and a conflict in the pork industry between demand for lean pork and use of banned pharmaceuticals as feed additives. A new program encouraging supermarket chains to purchase produce directly from farms recognises the importance of direct interaction between final users and agricultural producers. Finally, the experience of a company supplying fruit to a multinational supermarket chain shows that Chinese growers can supply quality products, but the case also illustrates the costly testing, monitoring, training and guidance required.

Gale, H Frederick, Hu, Dinghuan, China’s food quality challenge, Farm Policy Journal, Vol. 8, Number 3, Spring 2011, A private future for food and fibre quality, Australian Farm Institute, pp. 17-25, ISSN: 1449-2210 (print), 1449-8812 (online)

$12.10


 
 




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FPJ0803 - Hobbs, JE - Public and private standards for food safety and quality - international trade implications

This article examines the implications for the international trade environment of public and private standards for food safety and food quality. Public (mandatory) standards are a response to a perceived market failure and include mandatory risk assessment procedures, restrictions on harmful products, and labelling requirements. Disparate public standards create challenges for international trading partners and are dealt with through the World Trade Organization (WTO) Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS), and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Agreements. Private standards for food safety and quality are becoming a prominent feature of international food markets and include proprietary, consensus and third-party standards. The WTO has no jurisdiction over private standards. Key questions include whether private standards divert or reduce trade or whether they can be trade enhancing, and under what conditions. The implications for the WTO are discussed, and future trade policy research needs pertaining to the coexistence of public and private standards for food safety and quality are identified.

Hobbs, Jill E, Public and private standards for food safety and quality: international trade implications, Farm Policy Journal, Vol. 8, Number 3, Spring 2011, A private future for food and fibre quality, Australian Farm Institute, pp. 5-15, ISSN: 1449-2210 (print), 1449-8812 (online).

$12.10


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