Food Contact Materials and The European Framework Regulation (EC) 1935 2004

Understanding the landscape of regulations for various Food Contact Materials in cohesion with the European Framework Regulation (EC) 1935/2004

Within the European Union, all food contact materials and articles intended to come into contact with food need to comply with the European Framework Regulation (EC) 1935/2004. This regulation states that food contact materials may not threaten human health or bring about changes in composition, smell or taste of the food. In addition all food contact materials should be manufactured according to good manufacturing practices (GMP) as regulated by Regulation (EC) 2023/2006.

Many companies have to deal with the food contact regulations on a mandatory basis for food packaging materials but also for materials and articles used in the food industry, such as machinery, storage tanks, filters, conveyor belts, and for kitchen utensils: cutlery, cups, dishes, food appliances, inner walls of refrigerators for example.

In addition to the Framework Regulation certain food contact materials, e.g. plastics ((EC) 10/2011), ceramics, regenerated cellulose are covered by specific European measures.

For many materials such as paper and board, inks, coatings, rubbers, and other items, no harmonized European regulation is in place but Member States may adopt national regulations.

In order to support the industry with the risk assessment of these non-regulated materials on European level, industry associations have published guidelines to support the industry with  the risk assessment of these food contact materials. One example is the CEPI Guidance for paper and board food contact materials.

All food contact materials covered by a specific measure in Europe need to be accompanied by a written Declaration of Compliance (DoC) stating that they comply with the regulations applicable to them. In addition supporting documentation and traceability through labelling or documentation in the supply chain should be ensured. Companies should be able to identify one step prior and one step later in the supply chain.

Intertek’s Food Contact experts will provide guidance by understanding the European landscape of regulatory requirements for all kind of food contact materials and articles. They can support by setting up compliance testing programs (migration testing) to help our clients meet food safety requirements and ensure the safety of the food supply chain on a global basis, and can assist in preparing a Declaration of Compliance.

Contact one of our food contact materials experts to discuss your specific requirements.

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