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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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FDA - Russia: Food Safety, Quality Control, and Labeling

MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
Between
THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION OF THE
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
and
THE FOREIGN AGRICULTURAL SERVICE OF
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
And THE
THE STATE COMMITTEE FOR SANITARY
AND EPIDEMIOLOGICAL SURVEILLANCE
OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
and
THE COMMITTEE OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
ON STANDARDIZATION, METROLOGY
AND CERTIFICATION
CONCERNING
TECHNICAL COOPERATION AND INFORMATION EXCHANGE
ON FOOD SAFETY, QUALITY CONTROL, AND LABELING
TO PROMOTE PUBLIC HEALTH AND FACILITATE TRADE

The Food and Drug Administration of the Department of Health and Human Services of the United States of America, and The Foreign Agricultural Service of the Department of Agriculture of the United States of America, on the one hand; and The State Committee for Sanitary and Epidemiological Surveillance (GOSKOMSANEPIDNADZOR) of the Russian Federation, and The Committee of the Russian Federation on Standardization, Metrology and Certification (GOSSTANDART); on the other hand;

In keeping with the Agreement on Cooperation in the Fields of Public Health and Biomedical Research signed on January 14, 1994, by the Governments of the United States and the Russian Federation,

Desiring to strengthen the bonds of friendship and cooperation between the Russian Federation and the United States of America, Recognizing that both the Russian Federation and the United States of America give special importance to the protection of public health by way of ensuring the safety, quality, and correct labeling of food, Desiring to facilitate the trade of food between the Russian Federation and the United States of America, And noting that increasing global trade of food and global trade agreements require that governments work to harmonize sanitary measures while not compromising food safety, Have reached following general understanding to guide their cooperation:

I. OBJECTIVES

The objectives of this Memorandum of Understanding are to:

  1. Exchange information and identify and implement technical cooperation and training activities for specialists, including conducting workshops. These activities may be undertaken for imported and domestic food in the following areas: food safety, quality, labeling, laws and regulations; food examination, sanitation and control procedures and policies; risk assessment; analytical methodology; consumer food hygiene education; and other areas where additional information is needed concerning either side’s food safety, quality control, and labeling systems. 
  2. Assist in ensuring transparency in the establishment and application of each side’s sanitary measures. 
  3. Identify the systems used by each side and the type of documents that would be acceptable to each side to demonstrate the safety, quality, and labeling of food in accordance with the laws in the Russian Federation and the United States of America. 
  4. Provide confidence and build foundations for future agreements to ensure the safety, quality and correct labeling of food and to facilitate food trade for both the Russian Federation and the United States of America. 
  5. Develop and enhance systems for consideration and resolution of issues related to food safety, quality, and labeling to promote public health and facilitate trade between the Russian Federation and the United States of America. 
  6. Exchange information on the activities and deliberations of international food safety and quality standard-setting organizations, such as the Codex Alimentarius Commission. Facilitate the participation in such international organizations, and work within the framework of multilateral agreements toward harmonization of food requirements. 
  7. Provide distribution of information on each government’s food import requirements to exporters in the Russian Federation and the United States of America.

II. IMPLEMENTATION

To achieve these goals, both sides intend to:

  1. Meet and consult periodically to discuss emerging issues and to promote cooperation in carrying out the objectives of this Memorandum of Understanding. Meetings should alternate between the Russian Federation and the United States of America and will be held on mutually agreeable dates and at mutually agreeable places. Each side should designate a Chairperson. Together, they should develop meeting agendas and circulate appropriate information to participants prior to the meeting. Agenda topics and briefing papers should be identified as items for active discussion, information requests, or training needs. In addition, the Chairperson for the host country should be responsible for preparing and obtaining agreement on the minutes of the meeting. 
  2. Facilitate the import and export of food through the exchange of regulatory information on sanitary measures, requirements, and standards. 
  3. Work towards identifying the kinds of documents that demonstrate safety, quality, and correct labeling of food in accordance with the regulations and laws of the Russian Federation and the United States of America. 
  4. Identify and consider conducting technical cooperation and training programs for specialists from GOSKOMSANEPIDNADZOR, GOSSTANDART, and the Institute of Nutrition, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences. 
  5. Facilitate cooperation between the scientific centers of the Russian Federation and the United States of America, working in the area of food safety, quality, and labeling. 
  6. Provide information, as available, on the safety, quality, and labeling of food for export and on the manufacturers, producers or processors of this food.

All activities carried out under this Memorandum of Understanding are subject to the availability of appropriated funds, resources and personnel and are to be conducted in accordance with the laws of the Russian Federation and the United States of America.

III. COORDINATORS

Each participant in this Memorandum of Understanding should name a contact person to assist in logistical activities, and coordinate follow-up actions and implement the decisions reached during the meetings.

Activities under this Memorandum of Understanding will begin on the last date of signature of all participants. After the first year the participants plan to evaluate the Memorandum, thereafter, no less than once every five years. It may be amended by mutual written consent or terminated by any participant upon a 60 day written notice to the other participants.

Done in duplicate, in the Russian and English languages.

FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
HUMAN SERVICES, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
BY: Donna E. Shalala /s/
DATE: January 30, 1996
PLACE: Washington, D.C..

FOR THE STATE COMMITTEE FOR SANITARY AND EPIDEMIOLOGICAL
SURVEILLANCE OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
BY: G.G. Onitshenko /s/
DATE: January 30, 1996
PLACE: Washington, DC

FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF
AGRICULTURE OF THE UNITED
RUSSIAN FEDERATION ON STATES OF AMERICA
:
Richard E. Rominger /s/
BY: S. Bezverkhi /s/ DATE: January 30, 1996
DATE: March 29, 1996 PLACE: Washington, D.C.

PLACE: Moscow, Russian Federation 

FOR THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION OF THE
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
BY: Mary Pendergast /s/
DATE: January 30, 1996
PLACE: Washington, D.C.

FOR THE COMMITTEE
OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
ON STANDARDIZATION, METROLOGY, AND CERTIFICATION:

BY: S. Bezverkhi /s/
DATE: March 29, 1996
PLACE: Moscow, Russian Federation

SUBJECT:

Technical Cooperation and Information Exchange on Food Safety, Quality Control, and Labeling to Promote Public Health and Facilitate Trade (FDA Agreement Number 225-96-2005)

NOTES:
The FDA contact for this MOU is Frank MacKeith, HFS-585
Tel. No.: 202-205-4045
This MOU is in effect indefinitely.