Korean Cabbage Internationally Recognized as ‘Kimchi Cabbage’    [17-05-2012]
An international body has officially recognized Korean cabbage as “Kimchi cabbage.” The Codex Alimentarius Commission국제식품규격위원회, an international food-standards maker, reached the decision during its 44th session in Shanghai, the Korean Food and Drug Administration (KFDA)식품의약품안전관리본부 announced on May 2. Korean cabbage has been known until recently as either Chinese cabbage or Napa cabbage. According to a KFDA official, the decision will be adopted at the international agency’s general assembly next year.

Accordingly, Koreans will now be able to call the most important ingredient for one of their most important traditional dishes “Kimchi cabbage” with pride. Until now, nearly all cookbooks or recipes for traditional Korean dishes regarding kimchi, a staple of the Korean diet for centuries, normally begin with a general statement that read something like, “common ingredients include Chinese cabbage, radish, garlic, red pepper, etc.” This is the second feat of its kind with regard to Korea’s efforts to establish its sovereignty over kimchi. On July 5, 2001, the international food-standards maker designated kimchi as the only name for the traditionally fermented Korean food, dismissing Japan’s claim for the designation of “kimuchi.”

However, the latest Codex decision did not come amid unanimity. “There are grounds for the name change with the change in appearance, but Chinese netizens are upset at the adjective indicating the nationality of the vegetable being withdrawn and are showing their displeasure,” the Korea Times wrote on May 4. “As it has been with other cases they have reacted on the basis of strong nationalism, perhaps reflecting their growing global power. In some cases, they are ahead of their government in their eagerness to flex their muscle.”

In the latest session, the Codex Alimentarius also classified persimmons and jujube fruits as pome and stone fruits that are native to the Korean climate. Until now, those fruits have been classified as tropical fruits. As a result, Korean persimmons and jujube fruits will now be subject to pesticide residue standards set for pome and stone fruits, instead of those for tropical fruits. This will save the country from huge expenses incurred under Codex pesticide standards when it exports these fruits to foreign countries. The KFDA had been making efforts to rectify this wrong since 2010.

The Codex Alimentarius also approved Korean fungicide residue standards set for red ginseng and undried ginseng. Back in 2011, the international food-standards setter had approved Korean standards for residual azoxystrobin, a fungicide, for general varieties of ginseng. Meanwhile, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reviewed similar data submitted by the KFDA.
Therefore, it seems likely that the U.S. will soon approve Korean standards for residual fungicide for ginseng soon. The Codex thus reaffirmed Korea’s sovereignty over kimchi and ginseng, above anything else. “We expect that the latest Codex decision will be largely conducive to increasing exports of red ginseng, jujube fruits, and persimmons,” the KFDA official added.

In a separate decision, the international food-standards setter also accepted Korea’s recommendation that some indigenous Korean edible herbs should be registered under their Korean names, including “Cham-chwi,” “Cham-na-mul,” “Cham-ssuk,” “Dang-gwi,” “Gom-chwi,” and “Dol-na-mul.”
  출처: 청소년 영자신문 틴타임즈 (www.teentimes.org)