For the 34th time since 1988 over 40 coeliac societies from all over the world met in Lisbon, Portugal to discuss important questions concerning the life quality of coeliac people and the work done in each country and by the umbrella organization AOECS. Over one hundred delegates met over three days in a sunny and hot Lisbon.
AOECS is an international umbrella organisation with over 40 national coeliac societies over the world as both full and associate members. Through a democratic voting session at the Annual General Meeting, members steer and approve the work done by the organization, as it is the General Assembly of members which has the ultimate responsibility for the decisions and actions of AOECS.
This year over hundred delegates met in Lisbon, where the event was elegantly hosted by the Portuguese Coeliac Society. The event counted with support from two international platinum sponsors Takeda and Dr.Schär as well as several local sponsors among them gold sponsors such as 2M Pharma Group and the certification body SGS.
A new standard will become mandatory in 2023
One topic discussed during this 34th Annual General Meeting was the launch of the AOECS Standard 3.0 which is a guideline for gluten free food producers and the food safety auditing companies which are in charge to verify production is done without risk of gluten cross contact.
The AOECS Standard 3.0 becomes mandatory as of January 1st 2023.
If you wish to download the updated AOECS Standard, please click the link below.
Download AOECS Standard
The Crossed Grain Trademark was discussed
Another important issue was how to boost food business operators appetite to use the Crossed Grain Trademark in their gluten free packaged products to guide consumers in finding safe gluten free food. The Crossed Grain Trademark, is licensed by AOECS through the different National Coeliac Societies to food brands and manufacturers .
Read more about the European Licensing Scheme for gluten free prepackaged food by clicking on the link below.
Gluten Free Certification
Eating out for coeliacs
The secretary general, Veronica Rubio, also declared that AOECS will pursue the continued work towards developing a European Standard for the HORECA industry to be able to serve safe gluten free food at restaurants, hotels and events.
Also present at the General Assembly was the Coeliac Youth of Europe (CYE) which is the youth section of AOECS. Among several other very exciting projects the youth section is working to make life easier for coeliacs who travel through their project the Travel Net.