On October 23-25, 2018, the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) Scientific Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes and Processing Aids (CEP) held its third plenary meeting in Parma, Italy. Two sessions on October 24-25, 2018, were open to observers (FPF reported). The meeting minutes were agreed on November 16, 2018, and are now available online.

During the closed sessions, the CEP Panel discussed, among other topics, the draft opinion on the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) recycling process RecyPET Hungaria (FPF reported). The opinion was unanimously adopted, “subject to incorporation of changes as suggested during the meeting.”

During the open sessions, the CEP Panel’s Working Group (WG) on Phthalates reported on its progress regarding the safety reevaluation of dibutyl phthalate (DBP, CAS 84-74-2), benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP, CAS 85-68-7), bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP, CAS 117-81-7), diisononyl phthalate (DINP, CAS 28553-12-0), and diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP, CAS 26761-40-0) which are authorized for use in food contact materials (FCMs) (FPF reported). The CEP Panel addressed “the complexity of the combined assessment of the different phthalates, both in terms of toxicology and exposure” and discussed “the possibility of grouping some of these phthalates under a group TDI [(tolerable daily intake)], and . . . the approach for the exposure assessment and its related limitations.” The WG will further discuss these considerations at its next meeting. Once the scientific opinion on the five phthalates is revised and endorsed by the CEP Panel, it will be subject to a public consultation.

Further, new mandates and valid questions for the safety assessment of FCMs were presented: Poly Recycling AG PET recycling process (Starlinger PET direct iV+), Veolia Beteilingungsgesellschaft mbH PET recycling process (URRC), bis(2-ethylhexyl)-cyclohexane-1,4-dicarboxylate (CAS 84731-70-4) for use as additive in plastics (Hanwha chemical), Jász-Plasztik Kft PET recycling process (Vacurema prime technology), and phosphorous acid, triphenyl ester, polymer with alphahydro-omega-hydroxypoly[oxy(methyl-1,2- ethanediyl)], C10-16 alkyl esters for use as monomer or additive in plastics.

Lastly, the CEP Panel answered questions from observers.

Read more

CEP (November 19, 2018). “Scientific Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes and Processing Aids (CEP) – Minutes of the 3rd plenary meeting.(pdf)