Food Law News - EU - 2001

FSA Letter, 7 March 2001

ADDITIVES - Amendment to Directive 96/77/EC Laying Down Specific Purity Criteria on Food Additives Other Than Colours and Sweeteners

The letter is to inform people that a Directive amending Commission Directive 96/77/EC for the third time was adopted unanimously at the Standing Committee for Foodstuffs on 15 February 2001. The final text will shortly be published in the Official Journal of the European Communities. This will cover most of the additives listed in Directive 95/2/EC and not covered in earlier purity criteria Directives (96/77/EC, 98/86/EC and 2000/63) and is based on Doc. SANCO/2622/2000.

There are now only a few miscellaneous additives that have not been included in this or the earlier Directives referred to above. These are E 1201 Polyvinylpyrrolidone and E 1202 Polyvinylpolypyrrolidone, which were originally to be included in the third amendment to 96/77/EC but later deleted to permit further consideration by the Scientific Committee on Food, and four new additives (E 949 hydrogen, E 943a Butane, E 943b Iso-butane and E 944 Propane), recently permitted for use under Directive 2001/5/EC (see paragraph below). These will be discussed at forthcoming Commission Working Group meetings, prior to being included in a later amendment to Directive 96/77/EC.

Member States have until 1 June 2002 to implement the provisions of the new Directive into national legislation. To this end, the Food Standards Agency are drawing up regulations amending the Miscellaneous Food Additives Regulations 1995 (as amended) which we will circulate for comment as soon as they are available. You will wish to be aware that the amending Regulations will also implement the provisions of Directive 2001/5/EC, the third amendment to Council Directive 95/2/EC. Directive 2001/5/EC was adopted at the Council of Ministers on 19 January and published in the Official Journal of the European Communities (reference: L 55/59 of 24.2.2001 ). Member States will have until 24 August 2002 to implement its provisions into national law.

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