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Food Supplements

Volume 408: debated on Thursday 3 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health which food supplements which are safe will be removed from the market in 2005. [121254]

Food supplements, like other foods, are not subject to prior approval before marketing unless they are genetically modified or are "novel". Therefore, the Food Standards Agency does not hold detailed safety information about food supplement products on the UK market. These products are, however, required to comply with food law, including the Food Safety Act 1990.According to information provided by industry, Annex I and Annex II of the Food Supplements Directive presently omit six minerals and many chemical sources of vitamins and minerals currently used in food supplements on the UK market. The provisions of The Food Supplements (England) Regulations 2003 come into force on 1 August 2005; however, the regulations take advantage of the derogation in Article 4 of the directive which enables member states to allow, subject to certain criteria being met, the continued sale of products containing vitamin and mineral sources not yet on the permitted lists up until 1 January 2010.