Soft drink makers to limit heavy metals, says EFSA panel

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: United kingdom, Efsa

Europe's food watchdog concludes soft drink makers should propose
limits for heavy metals and aromatic hydrocarbons used as carrier
solvents for flavouring preparations in soft drinks.

A panel of scientific experts at the European Food Safety Authority drew their conclusions​ after examining a dossier on propan-2-ol (isopropanol,IPA) put forward by the European Flavour and Fragrance Association (EFFA).

"The ADI of 2.4 mg/kg bw would be reached for a 60 kg adult by the daily consumption of 240 ml of soft drink which is less than a normal sized can or bottle,"​ says the EFSA panel.

Propan-2-ol (isopropanol, IPA) is authorised for use in the European Union (EU) as an extraction solvent and has a history of use in some EU countries as a carrier solvent for flavourings.

The petitioner - EFFA - had requested that propan-2-ol be approved for this latter function in soft drinks at a level of 600 mg/L.

The now defunct Scientific Committee for Food (that existed prior to the formation of panels at EFSA) previously established a temporary Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) of 1.5 mg/kg bw/day for propan-2-ol.

In addition to the studies from which the SCF derived this temporary ADI a subchronic oral toxicity study in rats, chronic inhalation studies in mice and rats, as well as reproductive and developmental toxicity studies in rats and rabbits are now available.

The panel noted the "particular sensitivity of the rabbit to propan-2-ol"​ but nevertheless, in the absence of any mechanistic information about species differences, the scientists decided to derive a full ADI of 2.4 mg/kg bw/day from the NOAEL of 240 mg/kg bw/day for maternal toxicity in rabbits.

Related topics: Policy, Flavours and colours

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