Safety for the environment of vitamin D3 for salmonids

nutritional additive, vitamins and provitamins, vitamin D3, cholecalciferol, fish safety
First published in the EFSA Journal
17 January 2019
29 November 2018
Scientific Opinion


The Panel on Additives and Products or Substances used in Animal Feed (FEEDAP Panel) of EFSA assessed the safety for the target species and the consumer of the use of a maximum total level of 1.5 mg vitamin D3/kg feed in fish nutrition (2017). The assessment was based on data that had been provided by the Norwegian Food Safety Authority (NFSA). Since the data set provided by the NFSA did not include any new information concerning the safety for the user and the environment, the 2017 opinion did not address the potential effects of the proposed increase in the maximum authorised levels of vitamin D3 on the safety for the user and the environment. The NFSA has submitted additional data and the European Commission has requested EFSA to deliver a new opinion on the safety for the environment of vitamin D3 as a nutritional additive for salmonids. Planktonic microalgae, inhabiting the sea, are a large group of photosynthetic organisms that contain both vitamin D3 and provitamin D3. Marine phytoplankton is distributed throughout the sea serving as the basis for all marine food webs. Therefore, since it is produced by phytoplankton, vitamin D3 may also be considered as being ubiquitous in the aquatic environment. Considering the different sources of vitamin D3already present in the marine environment, the FEEDAP Panel considers that an increase in concentration of vitamin D3 when used as a feed additive in compound feed for salmonids up to a maximum of 1.5 mg/kg is not expected to pose a risk for the environment.

Panel members at the time of adoption

Giovanna Azimonti, Vasileios Bampidis, Maria de Lourdes Bastos, Henrik Christensen, Birgit Dusemund, Maryline Kouba, Mojca Kos Durjava, Marta López‐Alonso, Secundino López Puente, Francesca Marcon, Baltasar Mayo, Alena Pechová, Mariana Petkova, Fernando Ramos, Yolanda Sanz, Roberto Edoardo Villa and Ruud Woutersen.
Panel on Additives and Products or Substances used in Animal Feed
feedap [at]
EFSA Journal 2019;17(1):5540
Question Number
On request from
European Commission