eNews from the Global Harmonization Initiative
JUNE 2014
Issue #12
In This Issue
GHI Second Book
Nanotech Symposium
Food Safety Resource
AJFAND Call for Papers
Just Published
Member News & Notes
Quick Links

Mr. Huub Lelieveld
The Netherlands

Mr. Larry Keener
United States

Dr. Sangsuk Oh

Dr. Gerhard Schleining

Dr. Vishweshwaraiah Prakash

Mrs. Christine Boisrobert
United States

Dr. Lilia Ahrn�

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Enroll online today! 



Ms. Julie Larson Bricher
Communications Director

Dr. Alina-Ioana Gostin
Ambassador Programme Director

Dr. Susanne Braun
Working Groups Coordinator

Dr. Aleksandra Martinovic
Meetings Coordinator

Mr. Richard Stier
Course Director

Dr. Vishweshwaraiah Prakash
Membership Director

Ms. Irena Soljic
Assistant General Secretariat

Ms. Nicole Coutrelis
Regulatory Advisor

Dr. Bernd van der Meulen
Legal Advisor - Food

Dr. Sian Astley
Newsletter Editor-in-Chief

Mr. Grigor Badalyan
Newsletter Publisher

Mr. Gunter Greil

Join a GHI
Working Group
GHI's Working Groups (WGs) provide the consensus-�building forums in which individual scientists share their expertise and come to agreement on the scientific principles that will support informed and objective global food safety, security and nutrition regulatory and legislative decision-�making.

Visit the GHI Website to find
out more about about the
heart and soul of GHI.



Dr. Roland Ernest Poms (Chair) 

ICC, Vienna, Austria 


Dr. Hans Steinhart

EuCheMS Food Chemistry Division, Hamburg, Germany


Dr. Pablo Juliano

CSIRO, Werribee, Australia


Dr. V. Balasubramaniam

The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA


Dr. Pingfan Rao

Fuzhou University and Chinese Institute of Food Science and Technology, Fujian, China


Dr. Jaap Hanekamp

Roosevelt Academy, Tilburg,  

The Netherlands


Dr. Sian Astley

EuroFIR, Brussels, Belgium


Dr. Maria Tapia

Universidad Central de Venezuela, Venezuela



Dr. Vladimir Kakurinov


Dr. Pablo Juliano

  Plan to participate at upcoming GHI Meetings!

In the coming months, GHI will hold several general meetings, working group gatherings, and make presentations at scientific meetings all over the globe.

Visit the GHI Website to get the scoop on our calendar of events.

Enroll as a member of GHI today and see what a difference your scientific expertise can make!  


It is my pleasure to introduce the new, improved electronic format of our newsletter, GHI Matters. The new e-communications system also will allow us to send you more timely individual updates on the activities of GHI's Working Groups and Ambassadors, and to deliver GHI Matters directly to your email in-box on a monthly basis.    


It is our intention that GHI Matters becomes a more interactive conduit of information for our members and supporters. We hope that you will find the links and news useful. Over the summer months, GHI will work to update the website, making it easier for users to navigate and download new member resources now in development. We're excited to feature links to these and other informative materials in future issues of GHI Matters.


Although there is a lot to read in this edition, I'd like to point out in particular the two GHI General Meetings taking place this summer and invite you to make plans to attend. The first will take place in June at the IFT Annual Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, US, organized and moderated by GHI Vice President Larry Keener. I will chair the GHI meeting scheduled to take place during the IUFoST World Congress of Food Science and Technology in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. During this Congress, new members of the International Academy of Food Science and Technology (IAFoST) will be inaugurated. Interestingly, IAFoST has many members who are also members of GHI. IAFoST Fellows who also have an official function in GHI are listed in this issue. I take the liberty of congratulating the newly elected IAFoST Fellows on behalf of the GHI community.


As always, we encourage you to contribute via email your GHI-related news, calendar listings and resource links for inclusion in upcoming e-newsletters and announcements. On behalf of the GHI Executive Board, I do hope that we will have the opportunity to meet at one of this summer's scientific conferences!

Best regards,


Huub Lelieveld

 President, GHI 

GHI to Publish Second Book Focusing on Safety of Traditional and Ethnic Foods

After the success of GHI's first book, Ensuring Global Food Safety: Exploring Global Harmonization, Elsevier and GHI have agreed to develop a second book. The new book will focus on the safety aspects of traditional and ethnic foods. Many traditional and ethnic foods provide excellent nutrition from sustainable resources, and while some have potential health implications (e.g., saturated fat intake), others have established health benefits, making them not only a source of cultural and traditional value but beneficial for the populations consuming them. There are, however, instances in which processing or consumption habits associated with traditional and ethnic foods may increase the risk of foodborne illnesses. Many people have doubts about the safety of such foods, even though these foods are safe if prepared and stored correctly. The book, Safety of Traditional and Ethnic Foods, will address these issues for a range of foods globally. It is hoped the various contributions will be compiled in December 2014 and ready for publication by Elsevier in 2015.  


Get a Copy of GHI's First Book


Based on the principles of GHI, Ensuring Global Food Safety: Exploring Global Harmonization offers a rational and multi-faceted approach to current food safety issues, while arguing that a science-based global regulatory framework will enhance the safety, availability and quality of the food supply worldwide. GHI was specifically established to help build global consensus on the scientific evidence underpinning food safety policymaking. This book provides practical examples in key areas such as microbiology, toxicology and nutrition, as well as discusses possible improvements necessary to sustain the integrity of the global food supply in the 21st century. Get a 20% discount by using Code 98440 when you order your copy from Academic Press/Elsevier...   


Food Nanotechnology Symposium to Look at Definitions, Risk and Global Harmonization

With rapid advances in knowledge, nanotechnology has enabled the food industry to improve processing, develop products with new functionalities and characteristics, and utilize new packaging materials. Indeed, nanotechnology has already brought benefits such as enhancement of nutrients, product stability and functionality.

Nevertheless, safety is an important issue with any new technology and has attracted a lot of attention across the scientific community. Some natural materials exist at the nanoscale, which have been consumed by human beings for decades. This makes the application of nanotechnology in food different from those in other areas. Apart from Europe, most countries have not finalized regulations regarding nanotechnology in food manufacturing.

Thus, the Taiwan FDA is seeking to capitalize on an opportunity, as well as a challenge, by publishing a draft with global harmonization in mind, balancing technology development with safety. To achieve this goal, academia has been funded to organize activities, including a roundtable discussion with stakeholders, a workshop and an international symposium. The workshop will be open to public and aims to collect opinions from an informed audience. The purpose of the symposium, 2014 International Symposium on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in Food to be held 27 June at the Taipei World Trade Center, Taiwan Republic of China, is to learn from overseas experts in this field.

The Graduate Institute of Food Science and Technology (GIFST) at National Taiwan University has organized these symposiums since 2011 and have again invited experts from around the world. This year, we would like to learn more from European experts to understand the background in defining food nanomaterials and risk assessment. We hope that the symposium will serve as a platform of exchanging both ideas and technology.

Among the topics expected to be discussed is the findings of a survey recently conducted by the GIFST
to understand more about the opinions of nanoscience experts with regard to foods consisting of materials or particles at nanoscale. The results will be used as a benchmark by the Taiwan FDA to finalize draft guidance on nanofoods. The questionnaire, developed by National Taiwan University, was used by Huub Lelieveld, GHI President, via the global GHI network, to interview 12 of these experts from around the world. In brief, the findings showed:
  • Most of the survey respondents agreed that it is reasonable to define nanoscale as 1 to 100 nm. However, unique properties, different from the bulk properties, are recommended.
  • It is difficult to reach a consensus on how many (in terms of numbers) nanoparticles should be present to be classed as a nanofood. Surface/ volume was identified as an important parameter.
  • About 45% of participants agreed it is safe to make nanomaterials from edible food materials by physical means (including cellulosic, starchy, and proteinaceous materials). Fermentation and enzymatic treatment were not recognized as safe methods in nanofoods (45%).
  • However, most participants agreed that a nanofood is safe when it is soluble, degradable or digested in the gastrointestinal tract. Most (64%) of participants disagree that a nanofood is safe to use if it cannot permeate the wall of gastrointestinal tract.
  • Premarket approval was considered as necessary by 64% of participants. However, most of participants did not consider information from genotoxicity tests in vitro, and absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion, and repeated-dose 90-day oral toxicity studies in rodents, were all necessary to approve a nanofood.
Overall, the experts agreed that safety is the major concern and there should be more work on risk assessment in nanofoods, particularly engineered nano-materials. Positive results from experiments on the safety of nanoparticles made from edible food material (such as cellulose, starch, protein, etc.) might increase consumer confidence about nanofood and could be helpful for future technology development. 

--By An-I Yeh, PhD, Distinguished
Professor, Graduate Institute of Food Science and Technology, National Taiwan University, Taipei (TW) and co-chair of the GHI Working Group on Nanotechnology 


Editorial Note: For additional reading on the subject, check out the

EFFoST Critical Reviews #3: "Governing Nano Foods: Principles-Based Responsive Regulation," written by GHI's Legal Advisor Prof. Bernd van der Meulen and coauthors.   


GHI Contributes to New Food Safety Resource

Encyclopedia of Food Safety, 1st Edition

Editor in Chief: Y. Motarjemi  

30 Jan 2014, ISBN 978012378612

With the world's growing population, the provision of a safe, nutritious and wholesome food supply for all has become a major challenge. To achieve this, effective risk management based on sound science and unbiased information is required by all stakeholders, including the food industry, governments and consumers themselves. In addition, the globalization of the food supply requires the harmonization of policies and standards based on a common understanding of food safety among authorities in countries around the world.

With some 280 chapters, the Encyclopedia of Food Safety provides unbiased and concise overviews, which form comprehensive coverage of a broad range of food safety topics. Look for GHI President Huub Lelieveld's chapter, "The Global Harmonization Initiative," which introduces the organization, its aims and initiatives. 


New Issue and Call for Papers
African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development

Issue 62 of the African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development (AJFAND) is now available online. The open access edition includes 13 peer-reviewed papers. In an effort to clear the backlog of manuscripts, 12 to 14 papers will be included in future issues. This will also enable reduce journal processing time.


2014 is the United Nations' Year of Family Farming and African Union Year of Agriculture and Food Security. It is truly refreshing to see the amount of attention now being turned to smallholder farmers, gender issues, women farmers, youth in agriculture, the whole value chain, partnerships and capacity building. Resources to accompany these expressions of good will are needed now, and the food science fraternity needs to be included much more in discussions aimed at finding solutions for hunger and food insecurity.


Call for Papers: AJFAND has issued a call for papers on the topic of research methods innovation and challenges in rural Africa. For more information and submission details, please visit the Call for Papers page on the journal's website, or contact the issue's editor designate, Prof. Richard Douglass of Eastern Michigan University (US).  


--By Ruth Oniang'o, AJFAND Editor-in-Chief

and GHI Ambassador in Kenya


Conferences & Meetings  

GHI regularly makes presentations and holds general and working group meetings in conjunction with scientific and food industry conferences around the globe.

Please check
our website for details, or contact the GHI Meetings Coordinator, Aleksandra Martinovic, via email to submit listings.

Taipei World Trade Center

Taiwan Republic of China


Nanotechnology remains a hot topic worldwide despite being used in a variety of fields. In agriculture and food, applications are impacting the food industry and consumers in terms of food processing, packaging and production. This symposium will serve as a platform for exchanging information about nanotechnology applications in food processing and packaging, risk assessment strategies, and the impact on the food industry and consumers. GHI President Huub Lelieveld will give a presentation at the symposium, titled 'Harmonisation of food safety regulations and nanotechnology.' 



21-24 June 2014

Morial Convention Center

New Orleans, Louisiana USA


GHI is pleased to invite you a General Information Meeting that will be held at the Institute of Food Technologists on 22 June 2014 from 12.00 pm - 2 pm in Room 255 in the Morial Convention Center. The agenda includes: history and background of GHI, mission and membership, and updates on GHI's Ambassador Programme, Working Groups, and publications. If you are attending the IFT meeting in New Orleans, please do not miss the opportunity to participate. GHI Vice President Larry Keener will chair the meeting and GHI Communications Director Julie Larson Bricher will be on hand to update members on upcoming communications activities. 



IUFoST 17th World Congress of Food Science and Technology & Expo 


17-21 August 2014

Montreal, Canada  


The IUFoST 2014 will focus on advances in food science and technology; insights into key industry drivers such as: food safety, food policies and market regulations, trends in food processing, consumer behavior, sustainability; and challenges facing the industry today. GHI President Huub Lelieveld, in collaboration with GHI Food Chemical Safety Working Group chair Jaap Hanekamp, will present a keynote address, titled "Harmonization of food regulations: Differences in regulations result in needless destruction of safe food and hampers food trade."


GHI will also hold a General Meeting at the World Congress and everybody is invited to join. Further information about time and location will be sent to the members with an invitation and agenda. If you are not a member, and you would like to attend, or you are member with a pressing topic for discussion, please contact GHI Secretariat Irena Soljic.


New and Upcoming Articles of Interest

Quality of Food Safety Training and Education Plays Important Role      


Authors Yasmine Motarjemi and Huub Lelieveld discuss in a recent article how training and education are the stepping-stones to food safety linking theory with practice. How often do those responsible for implementing changes remain unaware of new legislation or fail to understand its importance? Training and education are fundamental elements, but their true importance is not always recognized. Poorly designed training and education do not achieve the desired objectives because they are treated lightly or as an afterthought, as if sitting in classroom and getting a certificate will ensure the outcomes ... read more at Food Safety Magazine.


Special Issue of JSFA to Feature GHI
Papers, Authors


Papers by GHI members who presented at the 16th IUFoST World Congress of Food Science and Technology held in Brazil in August 2012, are among those selected to be published as a special edition of the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. The papers emanate from the session, 'International perspectives on food safety regulations: A need for harmonized regulations,'  chaired by Prof. Hans Steinhart of the University of Hamburg, DE and GHI President Huub Lelieveld. Among the authors are Lucia Anelich, Anelich Consulting, ZA; Di�na B�n�ti, then-Central Food Research Institute, HU; Maria Cecilia Toledo, University of Campinas, BR; Atef Idriss, Middle East North Africa Food Associates, LB; Xiumei Liu, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CN; and Sangsuk Oh (Ewha Womans University, KR). The issue is expected to be published in 2014.   


Food Safety Brazil Interview Showcases GHI


GHI President Huub Lelieveld talks with Food Safety Brazil reporter Juliane Dias about harmonization of food safety standards in the world (article in Portuguese, translated from English). Read more online at Food Safety Brazil: Seguranca de Alimentos.   


Member News & Notes

Join Us for Monthly GHI Teleconferences
The activities of GHI are now sufficiently widespread and diverse that it is difficult to keep track of them. One solution has been the introduction of monthly teleconferences. For more information about how you can participate, please contact GHI Secretariat
Irena Soljic.

Thanks for Your Support!

Among GHI Members, there are a number of IAFoST Fellows with an official function in GHI - and we would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for their continued efforts in supporting GHI in a voluntary capacity when they are so busy here and elsewhere: 

  • Alastair Hicks (GHI Ambassador, TH)
  • Hans Steinhart (GHI Supervisory Board, DE)
  • Hosahalli Ramaswamy (GHI Working Group Chair)
  • Huub Lelieveld (GHI President, NL)
  • Lucia Anelich (GHI Ambassador, ZA)
  • Luu Dzuan (GHI Ambassador, VN)
  • Pieter van Twisk (GHI Ambassador, ZA)
  • Ping-fan Rao (GHI Supervisory Board, CN)
  • Ruth Oniang'o (GHI Ambassador, KE)
  • Sangsuk Oh (GHI Board member, KR)
  • Vishweshwaraiah Prakash (GHI Board member, IN)
  • Yao-Wen Huang (GHI Ambassador, USA)
A complete list of IAFoST Fellows can be found online.

GHI Ambassador Programme News

Gisela Kopper, who served as GHI Ambassador to Costa Rica, recently resigned to take up a post in the government of President Luis Guillermo Solis as Costa Rica's Minister of Science, Technology and Telecommunications. The inauguration took place in May 2014. We wish much success to Gisela in her new and, doubtless, challenging role supporting science, technology and telecommunications in Costa Rica, and representing her country on the international stage.

Please visit the GHI website to view the updated list of GHI Ambassadors and the countries they represent.   


Founded in 2004 as a joint activity of the US-based Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) International Division and the European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST), the Global Harmonization Initiative (GHI) is a network of scientific organizations and individual scientists working together to promote harmonization of global food safety regulations and legislation. For more information, please visit our website at www.globalharmonization.net.

GHI has legal non-profit entity status and its charter and constitution are registered in Vienna, Austria as the GHI-Association (ZVR453446383).


GHI is an initiative of the European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST), which is the European part of the International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFoST) and the International Division of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT). GHI is supported by many other scientific organzations and receives support from the European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group (EHEDG).