Codex Committee on Food Additives (Host Government — China)
The Codex Committee on Food Additives (CCFA) establishes and endorses permitted maximum levels for individual food additives. The CCFA prepares priority lists of food additives for risk assessment by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives as well as assigning functional classes to individual food additives.
The committee also recommends specifications of identity and purity for food additives for adoption by the Codex Alimentarius Commission and considers methods of analysis for the determination of additives in food.
Establishment of the Committee
The 29th Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission adopted the terms of reference proposed for the CCFA, thereby deciding to replace the Codex Committee on Food Additives and Contaminants (CCFAC) with the Codex Committee on Food Additives (CCFA) and the Codex Committee on Contaminants in Foods (CCCF). The Commission agreed that each Committee should review its terms of reference at its first session.
Existing Codex Standards
Standards relating to food additives* that have been endorsed and adopted into the international food code:
- General Standard for the Labelling of Food Additives when sold as such
- General Standard for Food Additives
- General Principles for the Use of Food Additives in Food
- List of Codex Advisory Specifications for Food Additives
- Guidelines for Simple Evaluation of Food Additive Intake
- Class Names and the International Numbering System for Food Additives
*This is an indicative list only. For a full list of standards approved by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, please consult its Official List of Standards.
The 45th Session of the Committee met in Beijing, China from 18-22 March 2013.
Matters for Adoption by the 35th Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission
The Committee forwarded:
- Draft and proposed draft food additive provisions of the General Standard for Food Additives (GSFA (para. 101 and Appendix VI)
- Proposed draft amendments to the International Numbering System for Food Additives (para. 116 and Appendix IX) and
- Proposed draft Specifications for the Identity and Purity of Food Additives (para. 125 and Appendix X).
Codex Standard and Related Texts for revocation
The Committee agreed to request the 36th Session of the Commission to revoke:
- Food additive provisions of commodity standards (para. 101 and Appendix VII) and
- Specifications for mineral oil, medium and low viscosity (INS 905e, f and g) (para. 125 and Appendix X).
Other Matters for Approval (New Work)
The Committee agreed to request the 36th Session of the Commission to approve:
- New work on the revision of the Guidelines for the Simple Evaluation of Food Additive Intakes (CAC/GL 3-1989) (para. 63 and Appendix V).
Other Matters of interest to the Commission and FAO and WHO
The Committee agreed:
- To a process to deal with food additives included in the GSFA with no corresponding monograph specifications (para. 16)
- To continue work on the alignment food additive provisions of commodity standards and relevant provisions of the GSFA with a view to finalise work on the meat standards by its next Session (para. 51)
- To prepare a discussion paper on the use of additives in additives (secondary additives) (para. 122)
- To forward the Priority List of Compounds Proposed for Evaluation to FAO and WHO for their follow-up (para. 130 and Appendix XI) and
- To prepare a discussion paper on different options for the use of the outcomes of the prioritisation exercise and other feasible steps to identify compounds for re-evaluation by JECFA (para. 138).
Matters Referred/Interest to Codex Committees and Task Forces
All active commodity committees
- Informed on the progress the decision-tree approach for its work on the alignment of the food additives provisions of commodity standards and relevant provisions of the GSFA (para. 46 and Appendix IV).
Relevant committees (endorsement)
- Endorsed, with some amendments, the food additive provisions forwarded by the Committees on Fish and Fishery Products, Processed Fruits and Vegetables, and Sugars and the FAO/WHO Coordinating Committee for Asia (paras 28-40 and Appendix III).
Committee on Fats and Oils (CCFO) Methods of Analysis and Sampling (CCMAS)
- Agreed to inform CCFO of the process for inclusion of compounds, such as rosemary extracts, in the Priority List for JECFA evaluation (para. 13).
Committee on Fish and Fishery Products (CCFFP)
- Will consider the request of CCFFP concerning the food additives, which are not technologically justified in specific food categories at its next Session (para. 29)
- Requested CCFFP to consider whether the provisions for dextrin, roasted starch (INS 1400) and polyoxyethylene (20) sorbitan monooleate (INS 433) in the draft Standard for Smoked Fish, Smoked-flavoured Fish and Smoke-dried Fish could be replaced by a reference to the Guidelines for the Use of Flavourings (CAC/GL 66-2008) (para. 31).
- Recommended CCFFP to revise the provision for sodium aluminium phosphate (INS 541) in the Standard for quick frozen fish sticks (fish fingers), fish portions and fish filets breaded or in batter (CODEX STAN 166-1989) on an aluminium basis (para. 96).
Committee on Nutrition and Food for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU)Requested CCNFSDU to clarify the application of Note 55 in the GSFA to relevant provisions in the Standard for Infant Formula and Formulas for Special Medical Purposes Intended for Infants (CODEX STAN 72-1981) (para. 71); and
- Requested CCNFSDU to clarify whether the limits of sodium to certain food additive provisions in CODEX STAN 73-1981 also apply to the relevant provisions of CODEX STAN 74-1981 (para. 75).
Committee on Processed Fruits and Vegetables (CCPFV)
- Confirmed that water-based flavoured drinks were covered by the broader food category 14.1.4 of the GSFA and informed the CCFPV of the procedure for proposals of new and revised provisions of the GSFA (para. 11);
- Will consider the request of CCPFV concerning the food additives, which are not technologically justified in specific food categories at its next Session (para. 35); and
- Recommended CCPFV to revoke the provision for aluminium potassium sulfate (INS 522) in the Standard for canned chestnut and canned chestnut puree (CODEX STAN 145-1985) (para. 96).
Committee on Sugars (CCS)
- Recommended CCS to revoke the provisions for sodium aluminosilicate (INS 554) and calcium aluminium silicate (INS 556) in the Standard for sugars (CODEX STAN 212-1999) (para. 96).
The 46th Session of the Committee has been tentatively scheduled to be held in China in 2014. The exact venue and date would be determined by the host Government in consultation with the Codex Secretariat.
29 May 2013