Food Law News - UK - 2007

FSA News Item, 6 July 2007

NOVEL FOODS - Comments wanted on glucosamine application

The Agency is consulting on the initial draft opinion, by its committee of independent experts the Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes, on the use of glucosamine hydrochloride from the fungus Aspergillus niger as a novel food ingredient.

In August 2004, the ACNFP issued an opinion that Cargill's glucosamine HCl derived from A. niger was substantially equivalent to the shellfish-derived glucosamine that was already on the market in food supplements and foods with particular nutritional uses (PARNUTs). The same applicant now seeks approval to market its fungal glucosamine HCl in a range of products, mainly beverages and fermented milk-based products.

Before any new food product can be introduced on the European market it must be rigorously assessed for safety. In the UK , the assessment of novel foods is carried out by the ACNFP, an independent committee of scientists appointed by the Food Standards Agency.

Following an initial public consultation period and the discussion of this application by the ACNFP at its meetings between September 2006 and May 2007, the committee has formulated a draft initial opinion on this novel food ingredient, concluding that the application requires additional assessment.

Any comments should be sent to the ACNFP Secretariat by 15 July and will be passed to the committee before it finalises its opinion on this novel food ingredient.

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