Midday Express, 25 February 2010
The Commission welcomes the publication of the European Food Safety Authority's (EFSA) second set of opinions covering more than 400 health claims. It follows the publication of the first series of opinions 1 of October 2009 covering more than 500 health claims of the approximately 4.000 submitted for scientific advice.
In total, more than 44,000 health claims were submitted to the Commission by the Member States. The Commission consolidated these into a list of 4,000. Due to the large number of health claims received and the delay in submissions by stakeholders to Member States, the deadline of 31 January 2010, stipulated in the Health Claims Regulation, for the adoption of a list of permitted health claims could not be met. EFSA intends to continue the publication of several series of opinions throughout 2010 and 2011.
With a view to protect consumers from unsubstantiated health claims on the food they buy, and in order not to delay the adoption of the list, the Commission announced in July 2009 that it will favour a process facilitating a progressive adoption of the Community list of permitted health claims and it has initiated discussions with the Member States on the health claims already assessed by EFSA. Likewise, health claims which will be rejected will be included in the Community Register in a list of prohibited claims.
See also: 25 February 2010 CLAIMS - EFSA publishes second series of opinions on ‘general function’ health claims