Marinalg: Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) Affirms Carrageenan Safety for Use in Infant Formula


Marinalg – July 29, 2014

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — At its 79th meeting in June, the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food

Additives (JECFA) completed an in-depth review of the science related to the safety of carrageenan–a soluble fiber made from red seaweed and used as a stabilizer in food–finding it to be safe for use in infant formula, including formula for special medical purposes..

JECFA is a respected scientific review panel that evaluates the safety of food additives. Its reports are used to guide food additive regulatory approvals around the world and are among the most important testimonials to the safety of any food additive that can be given. Carrageenan was one of four food additives reviewed in 2014 for use in infant formula by a special JECFA committee.

After reviewing available research on carrageenan safety, particularly a new study of piglets that is representative of human infants consuming carrageenan in infant formula, JECFA concluded that “the use of carrageenan in infant formula or formula for special medical purposes at concentrations up to 1000 mg/L is not of concern.”

JECFA’s findings are the latest in a series of global reviews examining scientific research on carrageenan and reaffirming its safety for continued use in food, including infant formula. The piglet study cited by JECFA was conducted by an independent laboratory and supported by carrageenan producers and related industries. As recently as 2013, U.S. regulatory agencies continued approval of carrageenan for use in organic infant formula and other organic food.

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