On the 21 October 2004, the Israeli government decided to establish the Supreme Food Council, jointly operated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Health (Resolution No.2630). The role of the Council, which meets monthly, is to coordinate the policy and implementation actions, enforcement, supervision and control of the Ministries of Health and Agriculture regarding all topics connected with the food chain.
Council objectives (as detailed in the government decision):
- To suggest, when needed, to the Ministries of Health and Agriculture and Rural Development, legislation and legislative changes regarding food which are under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Health and/or the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
- To define and institutionalize the continuum of distributing the Ministries' jurisdictions and responsibilities, including:
- Coordinating a continuum of activities including the determination of standards, supervision, enforcement, and reporting along the entire food chain. The professional activity will continue to be carried out by the already existing advisory committees in both ministries.
- Coordination of inspection and control at the points of interface between the ministries.
- Improving and increasing efficiency of the work and avoiding duplication.
- Suggesting, if required, the authorization of ministry employees for inspection and enforcement.
- Advising the ministries in planning annual tasks intended to maintain safe food (laboratory tests, inspection etc.)
- Encouraging standardization and harmonization of inspection and laboratory tests.
- Coordinating uniformity at the level of demands and supervision for importing, local production, local marketing and export.
- Reporting irregular findings in the food chain to the relevant ministries.
- Encouraging inter-ministry research and information exchanges.
- Developing and encouraging use of improved methods for risk evaluation.
- Coordinating inter-ministry cooperation for managing irregular occurrences in the food chain.
- Running practice exercises for managing irregular occurrences and preparing plans of action for issues at risk.
- Planning food policies suitable for maintaining appropriate, healthy and safe nutrition for the population in the short and long-term.
- Cooperating with additional government ministries and other bodies, as required.