Dutch group to create scientific safety dossiers

The Natural and Health Products Association of the Netherlands (NPN) has launched an initiative to prepare scientific dossiers for a number of ingredients that may be banned by the Food Supplements Directive, now EU law.

The association has raised in excess of $120,000 and employed a toxicologist to compile data into dossier form substantiating the safety of ingredients omitted from the directive?s positive list. Under the directive, dossiers supporting omitted ingredients, such as boron, chromium picolinate and zinc methionate must be submitted to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) by July 2005 or face pan-EU prohibition.

Less than 20 dossiers are known to be in composition but it's thought that 270 ingredients may be at risk. No dossier has yet been submitted to EFSA although some companies, such as New York-based ingredients supplier Nutrition 21, has data on the brink of submission, in its case for chromium picolinate.

?We have made a list of ingredients where industry hasn?t stepped forward with data,? said NPN president Peter Van Dorn. ?We are calling for any data on these ingredients, which we will compile into dossier form and submit to EFSA. We will receive this data in total confidentiality.?

Van Dorn said NPN had enlisted the support of the Belgian and Swedish supplement associations, while the Health Food Manufacturers? Association and Council for Responsible Nutrition in the UK had instigated initiatives of their own.

?We hope that most of the key ingredients are being addressed,? said Martin Last, vice chairman of the UK Health Food Manufacturer?s Association. ?We never expected 270 dossiers, but we thought there would be 60-70 of them. In that respect a lot of industry hasn?t woken up to the dangers this legislation presents. Our associations are doing all we can to rectify this situation.?

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