Food legislation and food safety – February 2021

01 March 2021

Developments in regulations
Chemical Watch has published a report (4.83 MB) on (regulatory) developments affecting FCMs around the world. EU: The EC has asked EFSA to provide scientific advice to support the development of a future EU-wide system for front-of-pack nutrition labelling. It will also inform the setting of conditions for using nutrition and health claims on foods. The Dutch government has announced (in Dutch) that 7 countries have formed an internationally coordinated cooperation (682 kB) to facilitate the use of the Nutri-Score nutrition label. This cooperation will take place within a Steering Committee and a Scientific Committee (606 kB). The EC has received 302 comments during the now closed feedback period for the roadmap for the ongoing evaluation and revision of EU legislation on FCMs. China: Keller and Heckman reports that the government has approved one new FCM, two new resins, and expanded use for four FCMs. UK: The Food Standards Agency has published an FCMs authorisation guide for authorising new FCMs to be placed on the market in Great Britain following Brexit. US: SGS reports that since the beginning of 2021, several proposals at the U.S. state level have been published to prohibit PFAS in consumer goods, especially those in food packaging. Minnesota’s SF 373 is also proposing to prohibit phthalates and bisphenols (BPA and its analogues) as part of its regulated substances in FCMs. A recently published article gives an overview.

McDonalds to remove PFAS from food packaging
McDonalds has announced that the company will remove PFAS from all of its consumer food packaging materials globally by 2025.

Migration of chemicals from food packaging
ACS researchers have found that nanotech plastic packaging could leach silver. The researchers illustrated that silver embedded in antimicrobial plastic can leave the material and form nanoparticles in foods and beverages, particularly in sweet and sugary ones.
New research (411 kB) released by the Zero Waste Europe Network has found high quantities of hazardous chemicals associated with food packaging in the human body. The researchers tested urine samples for the presence of chemicals commonly used in (single-use) plastic food packaging, i.e. phthalates and phenols, and associated by scientists with diseases such as cancer, as well as affecting the reproductive and immune system. Of the 28 chemicals analysed, an average of 20 chemicals were found in the samples.
FPF has published the second episode of its video blog series titled “Unwrapping Food Packaging.” In this episode, Jane Muncke discusses why low levels of chemicals present in food packaging may not mean that they are safe levels. A key message is that scientific evidence suggests that exposures to low levels of chemicals migrating from food packaging are not safe for current and future generations. Two key groups of chemicals to avoid include endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and known carcinogens.

Safety of cook in the pack food packaging
In a recent article, experts at Smithers discuss performance requirements that have to be met in order to ensure the safety of cook in the pack food packaging. Regulatory compliance, safety concerns and packaging appearance are among the subjects discussed. You can download the article after filling in your details.

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