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Scientific Opinion on the safety and efficacy of sorbic acid and potassium sorbate when used as technological additives for all animal species

Metadata

Panel members at the time of adoption

Gabriele Aquilina, Vasileios Bampidis, Maria De Lourdes Bastos, Lucio Guido Costa, Gerhard Flachowsky, Mikolaj Antoni Gralak, Christer Hogstrand, Lubomir Leng, Secundino López-Puente, Giovanna Martelli, Baltasar Mayo, Fernando Ramos, Derek Renshaw, Guido Rychen, Maria Saarela, Kristen Sejrsen, Patrick Van Beelen, Robert John Wallace and Johannes Westendorf.

Abstract

Sorbic acid and potassium sorbate are already authorised for use in food and feed as preservatives. Sorbic acid and its potassium salt are safe when used at the maximum proposed dose in feed for pigs, poultry, dogs and cats (2 500 (sorbic acid) and 3 400 (potassium sorbate) mg/kg) and young ruminants (6 700 (sorbic acid) and 9 000 (potassium sorbate) mg/kg). This conclusion is extended to all animal species. The contribution of potassium sorbate to the potassium supply of animals should be considered when formulating diets or when it is included in water for drinking. As no measurable residues of sorbic acid or potassium ion are expected in edible products of food-producing animals, sorbic acid and potassium sorbate are considered safe for the consumers when used up to the maximum proposed level. Sorbic acid and potassium sorbate are skin, eye and respiratory tract irritants. The use of sorbic acid and its potassium salt in animal nutrition would not pose a risk to the environment. As sorbic acid and potassium sorbate are authorised food additives within the EU for use as preservatives, it is reasonable to expect that the effect in food will be observed in feed when it is used at comparable concentrations and under similar conditions. The FEEDAP Panel has reservations about the effectiveness of sorbic acid and its potassium salt as preservatives in complete feedingstuffs with a moisture content of ≤ 12 %. Equivalent concentrations for sorbic acid and potassium sorbate when used as preservatives in water for drinking should be specified.

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