Commission sent back to drawing board on novel foods law

The European Parliament's environment committee voted on Monday (24 November) to revise EU rules on novel foods, backing a precautionary approach to new techniques like nanoparticles.

Meeting in Strasbourg, the committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) voted to pass a draft report on the European Commission’s proposed Novel Foods regulation, which aims to centralise authorisation of novel foods.

Novel foods are defined as those using nanomaterials, the cloning of animals for food production as well as traditional foods from third countries.

Precautionary principle upheld

The MEPs voted among other things to back the European Food Safety Agency's (EFSA) definition of ‘nanomaterial’, with a 10% nanoparticle threshold for an ingredient to qualify as ‘nano’.

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