Transnational business governance interactions in food safety regulation: Exploring the promises and risks of enrolment

Paul Verbruggen, Tetty Havinga

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

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Private actors have assumed an indispensable role in today’s global governance of food safety. One of the most prominent private actors in this domain is the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), a non-profit industry-led organization that benchmarks private food safety standards with a view to coordinating, converging and ratcheting up existing standards and enhancing compliance with public food safety laws. In this chapter we discuss the unfolding interaction between GFSI and domestic state actors in the regulation of food safety. We offer an empirical account of how and to what extent national food safety agencies in Canada, China and the Netherlands have engaged with GFSI and its benchmarked schemes. We analyse these transnational business governance interactions (TBGIs) using the framework proposed by Kenneth Abbott, Julia Black, Burkard Eberlein, Errol Meidinger and Stepan Wood. We show that the interaction between GFSI and public agencies has developed for different reasons and in different ways, with different results. To critically discuss these findings, and to deepen the TBGI analytical framework, we draw on the concept of enrolment as developed by Julia Black.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransnational business governance interactions
Subtitle of host publicationEmpowering marginalized actors and enhancing regulatory quality
EditorsStepan Wood, Rebecca Schmidt, Errol Meidinger, Burkard Eberlein, Kenneth W. Abbott
Place of PublicationCheltenham
PublisherEdward Elgar
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)978 1 78811 473 8
ISBN (Print)978 1 78811 472 1
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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