Views wanted on phytosterols application
Tuesday 11 December 2007
A company has applied to the Food Standards Agency to sell phytosterols as an ingredient in various food categories under the simplified procedure for approving novel foods.
Novel foods are a food or food ingredient that does not have a significant history of consumption within the European Union before 15 May 1997.
Naturis, a UK company, has asked the Agency to approve their phytosterol ingredient for sale, on the grounds that the product, which is derived from soya, is equivalent to the phytosterol ingredient marketed by Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) and authorised in 2004.
In accordance with the ADM approval, Naturis intends to use their phytosterol ingredient in yellow fat spreads, salad dressings, milk type products, fermented milk type products, soya drinks and cheese-type products.
Phytosterols are used by the food industry for their cholesterol-lowering properties. They are naturally present at low levels in vegetable oils and food derived from such oils.
Before any new food product can be introduced on the European market, it must be rigorously assessed for safety. In the UK, the assessment of novel foods is carried out by an independent committee of scientists appointed by the Food Standards Agency, the Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes (ACNFP).
Any comments on this application should be sent to the ACNFP Secretariat by 21 December 2007.