FSA News Item, 23 July 2002
Following the public consultation on these draft Regulations earlier this year, the Regulations have now been made and laid before Parliament.
The Regulations implement, in England, Commission Directive 2001/15/EC on substances that may be added for specific nutritional purposes in foods for particular nutritional uses (PNU foods). Separate parallel legislation is being made in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The provisions of the new Regulations relate to certain PNU foods to which certain nutritional substances have been added and to the Tryptophan in Food Regulations 1990.
The Regulations list the substances that may be added for specific nutritional purposes to certain PNU foods. The affected products include medical foods, slimming foods, sports foods and foods for diabetics. The controls apply to six categories of nutritional substances - vitamins, minerals, amino acids, 'carnitine and taurine', nucleotides, and 'choline and inositol'. Other substances not belonging to one of these categories may be used subject to general provisions laid down in these Regulations. Substances added for specific nutritional purposes to infant formulae, follow-on formulae, processed cereal-based foods and baby foods for infants and young children are not affected; they are controlled by existing legislation.
L-tryptophan (and its sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium salts and its hydrochloride) is included in the list of substances that may be added to certain PNU foods for specific nutritional purposes. Consequently, the Regulations also amend The Tryptophan in Food Regulations 1990 (Statutory Instrument 1990 No. 1728) to disapply the current prohibitions (in England) in so far as they conflict with Directive 2001/15/EC and also with Article 5 of Commission Directive 91/321/EEC on infant formulae and follow-on formulae and Article 5 of Commission Directive 96/5/EC on processed cereal-based baby foods and baby foods for infants and young children. The new Regulations also require prior notification to the Food Standards Agency of certain PNU foods to which L-tryptophan (or its permitted salts or hydrochloride) has been added and prohibit the sale of such foods where notification has not been given.
The regulations concerning the addition of L-tryptophan to certain foods for particular nutritional uses come into force on 5 August 2002. The remainder come into force on 1 April 2004.