The International Dairy Federation (IDF) is the only organization that can obtain global consensus on all aspects of dairying, and represent the global dairy sector towards intergovernmental organizations such as FAO, Codex, OiE and WHO. IDF is the key authority on dairy standards and has access to a large network of worldwide experts in dairy. IDF has four focus areas namely Sustainability, Nutrition, Food Safety and Standards. These focus areas span over ten work areas, 17 Standing Committees and six Task Forces. The dairy industry of South Africa is a member of the International Dairy Federation (IDF) through the SA National Committee of IDF (SANCIDF).
IDF offers (amongst others) the following benefits to member countries:
- The opportunity to meet and exchange ideas with fellow specialists in other countries.
- Access to a permanent source of authoritative material on all topics handled by IDF via the IDF Intranet, such as the IDF World Dairy Situation Report and technical bulletins.
- The understanding of a global vision of issues, opportunities and challenges facing the global dairy sector.
- Involvement in the Federation’s work through its working bodies (Standing Committees, Task Forces and Steering Groups) including discussions on scientific developments, new approaches to food safety and quality assurance concepts, nutrition and health and on the future orientation of the dairy sector.
- An opportunity for South African experts to influence and have access to the latest developments and information of other major international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), World Animal Health Organization (OIE), Codex Alimentarius, ISO and many other international bodies at governmental and non-governmental level. For instance:
- IDF has a well-recognized role of scientific and technical support to a variety of Codex committees. IDF is the only non-governmental organization having an established formal role within the Codex procedure.
- Development of a practice-orientated and world-wide applicable “Guide to Good Dairy Farming Practices” with active participation of FAO.
- Involvement in sustainability projects led by FAO, such as the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock and LEAP.
- Input in animal health and welfare standards of the World Animal Health Organization (OIE).
- Input into work on prudent use of antimicrobial agents, their residues and antimicrobial resistance by OIE, WHO and other organizations.