Food Safety and the Wto: The Interplay of Culture, Science, and Technology
Marsha A. EcholsISBN: 9041198490;
Today's international trade regime explicitly rejects cultural perceptions of what is safe to eat, overturning millennia of tradition. The World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS) enshrines "science" as the arbiter in resolving disputes involving this vital human need. This mandate, however, is under attack from many quarters. Critics cite environmental and ethical concerns, unpredictably changing technology, taste, food preferences, local culture, adequacy of governmental implementation of WTO standards, and the reliability of scientific opinion. A basic conflict has crystallized: food as culture versus food as commerce. The WTO/SPS approach is increasingly challenged for its balance in favor of economic considerations, and for its visible undermining of unique cultural identities. This important book explores the relationship between the SPS Agreement, food traditions, science, and technology. It deliberately confronts...
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