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Wednesday, 27 May 1987
Page: 3455

(Question No. 5173)


Mr Scott asked the Minister for Health, upon notice, on 17 March 1987:

(1) Has the Minister's attention been drawn to a joint publication, issued in 1981, by the FAO, WHO, and the International Atomic Energy Agency entitled Wholesomeness of Irradiated Food.

(2) Was Australia represented on the expert committee which drew up this document; if so, by whom.

(3) Has the document been accepted by WHO; if so, when, and was Australia represented at the WHO meeting when it was accepted.

(4) If it has been accepted by WHO, was the Minister's Department asked to comment on it before it was accepted; if so, when.

(5) Is the Minister able to say whether any further documents have been issued by the joint expert committee; if so, (a) when, (b) what are they and (c) what action has been taken on them.


Dr Blewett —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Yes.

(2) No. An expert committee does not provide for country representation. Professor M. J. Rand, University of Melbourne was a member of the Committee.

(3) and (4) As indicated by the disclaimer on page 1 of the publication, the report is ``the collective views of an international group of experts''. The WHO notes the views of such Expert Committees but does not formally adopt them. This particular report was noted by the Executive Board of WHO at its meeting of 25 May 1981.

(5) My Department is not aware of any further documents being issued by the Committee.