Food legislation and food safety – May 2024

04 June 2024

Food Contact Materials (FCMs) – rules and regulations
: SGS reports that the government has transposed Mercosur/GMC/RES. No. 48/2023 on metal FCMs into national law and has issued two draft proposals to revise the positive lists for certain plastic FCMs.
China: Keller and Heckman reports that the CFSA is soliciting comments on one new additive, one new resin and expanded usage for four additives and one resin for FCMs.
Turkey: SGS reports that the government has amended the food contact plastics regulation to align it with the EU rules in Regulation (EU) No. 10/2011. The provisions will apply from 1 January 2026.
US: Keller and Heckman reports that the FDA has added four new entries to its Inventory of Effective Food Contact Substances (FCS) Notifications.
Maine: The government reports the final adoption of legislation prohibiting PFAS in certain types of food packaging. The rules concerns nine types of packaging intended for short-term storage or to hold freshly prepared food that are comprised, in substantial part, of paper, paperboard, or other materials originally derived from plant fibres.
Claims, marking and labelling
EU: On 29 April 2024, the Council adopted the revised 'breakfast directives' (477 kB), a set of directives that lay down rules on the composition, sales name, labelling and presentation of honey, fruit juices, fruit jams and dehydrated milk.
FPF reports on the EC DG Sante meeting on 6 and 7 May 2024 where the status of the FCM regulation revision and the ban on the use of bisphenol A (BPA) and other hazardous bisphenols in FCMs was presented.
UK: The government has published a policy paper that sets out a common approach to communicating the environmental impacts of food and drink products and businesses, through standardisation of eco-labelling among other things.

Research on FCMs
Researchers at McMaster University have invented a suite of tests that enable food packages to signal if their contents are contaminated. Though the tests would cost just a few cents per package, food producers are reluctant to add costs that consumers will ultimately have to bear. The researchers are now working to bring producers and regulators together to get their inventions into commercial products.
FPF reports on research assessing over fifty studies on endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) migrating from packaging into beverages. Fariba Abbasi of Bushehr University of Medical Sciences and co-authors found that phthalates were most detected in beverages in polymer films, while BPA was measured most in canned beverages.
FPF also reports on a study led by Sapienza University of Rome investigating the overall concentration in and migration of PFAS and organophosphate esters (OPEs) from bio-based packaging purchased in Italy. The researchers specifically gathered single-use products made of sugarcane bagasse or cellulose wood pulp labelled “natural,” “compostable” or “biodegradable.” In all, they targeted twelve OPEs and 22 PFAS in two types of bowls, a plate, a cup, and three types of baking paper. They found the highest overall levels of both PFAS and OPEs in the baking papers.

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