Food additives and nutrient sources added to food: developments since the creation of EFSA
Note: This article is part of the Special Issue: Scientific achievements, challenges and perspectives of the European Food Safety Authority: Taking stock of the 10 years activities and looking ahead
During the ten-year period since the creation of EFSA, two scientific panels of EFSA, the former Scientific Panel on Food Additives, Flavourings, Processing Aids and Materials in Contact with Food (AFC Panel) and the Scientific Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS Panel) have been successively responsible for the safety assessment of food additives and nutrient sources added to food. They have successfully addressed a challenging number of applications and re-evaluations while developing specific risk assessment methodologies and guidance for applicants. The achievements of these scientific panels are presented, focusing on: (i) safety assessment of food additives covering new applications and re-evaluation of already authorised food additives; (ii) safety assessment of nutrient sources added to food; and (iii) safety assessment of other substances with a nutritional or physiological effect. The most important developments are highlighted; these include establishment of new guidance for food additive applications and development of more refined exposure assessment methodologies. The future challenges for the ANS Panel are anticipated to be mainly linked to its role in the re-evaluation of the safety of authorised food additives and the assessment of substances other than vitamins and minerals.