Food Law News - EU - 2012

DoH Interested Parties Letter, 24 May 2012

CLAIMS - Update from the European Commission’s Working Group meeting on nutrition and health claims, 21 May 2012


The Regulation authorising 222 general function health claims is likely to be published in the Official Journal of the European Union on Friday 25 May.

EU register of nutrition and health claims

The register has been updated in light of the imminent publication of the Article 13.1 Regulation. It’s useful to note that if searching the register for all nonauthorised Article 13.1 claims there is a limit to the number that will be displayed depending upon the internet browser you’re using. However, all the claims can be found in the Excel spreadsheet and the pdf document associated with the register.

Update on claims ‘on hold’

The aims is to have a substantive discussion about claims ‘on hold’ – other than botanicals - in standing committee by the end of this year and to make decisions about authorisation soon afterwards.

Update on further assessment

EFSA will publish the first batch of opinions on 4 June; the remainder will be published in July.


Discussion of European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opinions on Article 13.5 health claim applications: Q-2012-00266, 00267, 00268, 00269, 00279 for glucose and energy-yielding metabolism

These positive EFSA opinions say that foods bearing the claims should include a significant amount of glucose therefore there was a discussion of how this should be defined. There was also some discussion of whether these claims might lead to an undesirable increase in glucose consumption.

Discussion of European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opinion on Article 13.5 health claim application: Q-2011-00931 for citrulline malate and faster recovery from muscle fatigue after exercise

This is a negative opinion and no MS commented.

Discussion of European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opinion on Article 13.5 health claim application: Q-2011-01113 for glucosamine contributes to maintenance of normal joint cartilage

The EFSA opinion is negative; there were no comments from MS.

Discussion of European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opinions on an Article 19 health claim application (Q-2011- 01241) to amend the COU for the authorised claim for plant sterols and stanols and cholesterol reduction and an Article 14.1.a application (Q-2011- 00851) for a new claim for plant stanols only

These applications support increasing the range of daily sterol/stanol intake required for the claim from 1.5 - 2.4g to 1.5 - 3.0g and the magnitude of the effect from 10% to 11.3%/11.4%.

Discussion of Article 13.5 and 14 applications for which EFSA has published positive opinions but for which decisions have not yet been made

These include claims on L-tyrosine, sugar beet fibre, thiamine, Toothkind, zinc, slowly-digestible starch and ‘low fat and low trans spreadable fat’; the aim is to take decisions on these as soon as possible.


The Commission is preparing a new draft Regulation that would authorise the ‘no added salt’ claim and introduce the amendments to the conditions of use for ‘reduced’ previously agreed. The Regulation will not include ‘now contains X% less’ or amendments to ‘with no added sugars’. The Regulation may go to Standing Committee on 22 June.

Date of next Commission working group meeting

Monday 18 June – to be confirmed.

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