Food supplement companies from across Europe gathered in Brussels this month for a workshop on how to master the European Union’s changing regulatory environment for their products.
The workshop, titled ‘Building a Regulatory Strategy for Marketing Food Supplements in Europe: The key steps to a successful product launch’, was hosted on October 9 by expert advisers from international food and nutrition policy consultancy EAS, to help companies develop strategic solutions for launching products in Europe’s diverse marketplace.
The event covered every step of the process for launching food supplements in the European market, from product entrance strategies to advice on regulations for nutritional and herbal ingredients, health claims and labelling, and an overview of the proposed new Novel Food Regulation.
“With all of the EU legislative changes now coming to fruition we are entering a new regulatory era for food law as a whole, and what we’ve found is that many companies are still unclear on which areas are harmonised and which are not,” said EAS Regulatory Adviser Pieter Lagae. “The workshop helped to clarify these borderlines in relation to food supplements, and point participants in the right direction to successfully get their products through the necessary procedures.”
Participants were given an updated analysis of some of the most significant regulatory developments in the EU, such as the ongoing discussions surrounding maximum levels for vitamins and minerals; the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) guidance document on the safety of botanicals, and its recently published opinions on a selection of article 14 and article 13.5 claims.
“Health claims is at the top of the agenda not only in Europe but in regions across the world and at international level,” said Dr Daniel Tsi, Regional Director of the consultancy’s Singapore office, EAS Asia. “Many parts of Asia are also in the process of reviewing their existing claims regulations for food and health supplements. While it is unlikely that we will see identical legislation to that being developed in Europe, many similar ideas are being addressed. Much of this has been stimulated by the Codex Alimentarius work on claims and the scientific substantiation of claims, which will be discussed at the next Codex Nutrition Committee meeting in Cape Town, South Africa, in November.”
EAS is hosting its final workshop for the year in Malaysia on 18 November, hosted by experts from EAS Asia. The workshop, titled ‘The Practical Implications of Claims Regulations and key steps to successfully accessing markets in Asia & Europe’, aims to guide companies through the current rules for health claims in key Asian markets and in Europe.
For more information about the November 18 workshop, visit www.eas.asia.