Archives

April 20, 2023

FAO and WHO Issue Publication on Food-Safety Aspects of Cell-Based Food

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton   On April 5, 2023, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a report on the food safety aspects of cell-based food, which is animal agricultural products grown directly from cell cultures. FAO, in collaboration with WHO, developed the report to engage with respective members and relevant stakeholders “by proactively sharing the current knowledge to identify concrete...
January 14, 2022

EC Adopts Ban on Use of Titanium Dioxide (E171) as a Food Additive

The European Commission (EC) announced on January 14, 2022, that it adopted a ban on the use of titanium dioxide (E171) as a food additive. The ban will apply after a six-month transition period, and beginning summer 2022, this additive should no longer be added to food products. According to the EC, titanium dioxide “is used to impart white colour to many foods, from baked goods and sandwich spreads to soups, sauces, salad dressing and food supplements.” The...
December 17, 2021

EC Denies Authorization of Titanium Dioxide (E171) as a Feed Additive for All Animal Species, Requires Products Be Withdrawn from the Market in 2022

The European Commission (EC) published a regulation on November 30, 2021, in the Official Journal of the European Union that denies the authorization of titanium dioxide (E171) as an additive in animal nutrition, in the additive category “sensory additives,” and in the functional group “colourants: substances that add or restore colour in feedingstuffs.” Under the regulation, existing stocks of the additive must be withdrawn from the market by March 20, 2022....
October 19, 2021

ANSES Publishes Health Risk Assessment Guide for Nanomaterials in Food

On October 11, 2021, the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (ANSES) announced the release of a scientific guide to assess the risks posed by nanomaterials in food. According to ANSES, engineered nanomaterials are used in the food sector as: The guide provides a risk assessment methodology for engineered nanomaterials used as food additives and ingredients with a nutritional function. ANSES notes that the European Food Safety Authority...
August 6, 2021

EFSA Updates Guidance on Nanomaterials Risk Assessment to Be Applied in Food and Feed Chain: Human and Animal Health

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has updated its “Guidance on risk assessment of nanomaterials to be applied in the food and feed chain: human and animal health.” The updated guidance, published on August 3, 2021, covers the application areas within EFSA’s remit, including novel foods, food contact materials, food and feed additives, and pesticides. The guidance takes into account relevant scientific studies on physico‐chemical properties, exposure assessment and hazard...
June 7, 2021

ANSES Reiterates Recommendation to Restrict Use of Products Containing Nanomaterials “That Are of Little Benefit to the Population”

On June 3, 2021, the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (ANSES) published an interview with Aurélie Niaudet, who is in charge of assessing the risks associated with physical agents. Niaudet states that nanomaterials have novel properties that “are highly sought after and increasingly exploited, but can also induce specific types of behaviour when interacting with humans or the environment.” After the human body is exposed, “there is then the question...
May 21, 2021

NNI Will Hold Public Webinar on Nanosensors for Food and Agriculture

The U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) will hold a webinar on June 2, 2021, on nanosensors for food and agriculture. NNI states that nanotechnology-enabled sensors (nanosensors) “are promising tools to advance precision agriculture and support a safe and robust food supply chain, from farm to fork.” Panelists will discuss how the development and deployment of nanosensors could transform agriculture and food safety. They will highlight the state of the science,...
November 24, 2020

EFSA Publishes Environmental Risk Assessment of the Application of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in the Food and Feed Chain

On November 19, 2020, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) published a report entitled “Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA) of the application of nanoscience and nanotechnology in the food and feed chain.”  The authors analyzed existing ERA guidance documents for their adequacy to cover issues that are specific for nanomaterials, but note that none of the guidance has a specific focus on the food and feed chain.  Each nanospecific issue was addressed by briefly reviewing the...
July 13, 2020

EFSA Consults on Draft Guidance on Technical Requirements for Regulated Food and Feed Product Applications to Establish the Presence of Small Particles, Including Nanoparticles

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has begun a public consultation on a draft document entitled “EFSA Guidance on Technical Requirements for Regulated Food and Feed Product Applications to Establish the Presence of Small Particles Including Nanoparticles.”  The draft Guidance sets out information requirements for applications in the regulated food and feed product areas and establishes criteria for assessing the presence of a fraction of small particles.  EFSA...
October 8, 2019

EFSA Opens Consultation Period on Two Pilot Assessments on the Risks Caused by Multiple Pesticide Residues in Foods

On September 17, 2019, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opened a consultation period on two pilot assessments of the risks posed to humans by residues of multiple pesticides in food.  EFSA is seeking comments from interested parties on the assessments.  The first assessment considers the chronic effects of multiple pesticides on the thyroid system.  The second looks at acute effects on the nervous system. EFSA produced the assessments in collaboration with the...
April 10, 2019

Presentations Available from EFSA Stakeholder Workshop on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) held a stakeholder workshop on April 1-2, 2019, on the implementation of its guidance on the risk assessment of applications of nanosciences and nanotechnologies in the food and feed chain.  As reported in our July 5, 2018, blog item, “EFSA Publishes New Guidance on Nanotechnologies in Food and Feed,” in July 2018, EFSA published new guidance on how to assess the safety of nanoscience and nanotechnology applications. ...
August 5, 2016

President Signs Bill Creating National GMO Food Disclosure Standard

On July 29, 2016, President Obama signed into law Senate Bill 764 (S. 764), creating a national bioengineered food disclosure standard. This law requires companies to provide information on food packaging directing customers to a website or phone line for more information about genetically modified organisms (GMO) that are present in the food product. S. 764 also contains specific language preempting State regulations on "labeling of whether a food (including food served in a restaurant...
February 6, 2015

EFSA Scientific Network of Risk Assessment of Nanotechnologies in Food and Feed Publishes 2014 Annual Report

On February 16, 2015, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) published the 2014 annual report of the EFSA Scientific Network of Risk Assessment of Nanotechnologies in Food and Feed, which is intended to inform the public and the EFSA Advisory Forum about the Network’s specific activities and achievements.  EFSA states that, during 2014, the Network followed-up on its priority areas and contributed to making inventories of applications of nanomaterials already present in the food/feed...
December 12, 2014

EU Requirement to List Engineered Nanomaterials in Food Labeling Will Take Effect December 13

The European Commission (EC) issued a December 11, 2014, press release concerning European Union (EU) food labeling requirements that will take effect December 13, 2014.  The European Parliament and the Council adopted the requirements in 2011.  The requirements are intended to ensure that consumers receive clearer, more comprehensive, and accurate information on food content, and help them make informed choices about what they eat.  Under the requirements, all ingredients present in the...
July 18, 2012

FDA Bill Signed by President Includes Nanotechnology Provision

On July 9, 2012, President Barack Obama signed the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (P.L. 112-144). The Act authorizes the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to collect user fees from industry to fund reviews of innovator drugs, medical devices, generic drugs, and biosimilar biologics. It also includes a section concerning nanotechnology, directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services to “intensify and expand activities related to enhancing scientific...
July 3, 2012

FAO/WHO Release Draft Paper on Risk Assessment and Risk Management of Nanotechnologies for Comment

The United Nations (UN) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO) have released a draft paper entitled State of the art on the initiatives and activities relevant to risk assessment and risk management of nanotechnologies in the food and agriculture sectors for comment. FAO and WHO commissioned the paper with the objective of summarizing and analyzing the information that has become available since their 2009 expert meeting and determining possible courses...
April 20, 2012

FDA Releases Draft Guidance Documents on Nanomaterials

On April 20, 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the availability of two draft guidance documents addressing the use of nanotechnology, “Guidance for Industry: Assessing the Effects of Significant Manufacturing Process Changes, including Emerging Technologies, on the Safety and Regulatory Status of Food Ingredients and Food Contact Substances, Including Food Ingredients that are Color Additives,” and “Guidance for Industry: Safety of Nanomaterials in...
December 29, 2011

Coalition Sues FDA Over Alleged Risks from Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials

A coalition of nonprofit consumer safety and environmental groups sued the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on December 21, 2011.  The coalition is led by the International Center for Technology Assessment (ICTA), and includes Friends of the Earth, Food and Water Watch, the Center for Environmental Health, the ETC Group, and the Institute for Agricultural and Trade Policy. ICTA states that its lawsuit “demands” FDA...
October 11, 2011

Nanotechnology Regulatory Science Act of 2011 Introduced in Senate

On October 6, 2011, Senator Mark L. Pryor (D-AR) introduced the Nanotechnology Regulatory Science Act of 2011 (S. 1662), which is intended to address potential health and safety risks from products that contain nanotechnology materials. The bill would establish a program within the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to assess the health and safety implications of using nanotechnology in everyday products and develop best practices for companies using nanotechnology. The legislation would...
August 23, 2011

FDA Regulatory Science Plan Addresses Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released on August 17, 2011, a document entitled Advancing Regulatory Science at FDA: A Strategic Plan. FDA states that its core responsibility is to protect consumers by applying the best possible science to its regulatory activities.  FDA notes that rapid advances in innovative science have provided new technologies to discover, manufacture, and assess novel medical products, and to improve food safety and quality. To keep pace with and use...