The European Parliament today voted to reject new draft rules on the labelling of nanomaterials in food products (1). The Greens had proposed the rejection as they would have excluded all existing food additives from the labelling requirements. After the vote, Green food safety and health spokesperson Carl Schlyter stated:
"MEPs have today voted to prevent a backdoor attempt by the Commission to exempt additives in food products from EU labelling rules on nanomaterials. This rejection is a vote for consumer protection and will ensure that consumers are able to know about all nanomaterials contained in the food they consume, including food additives in nano-form.
"The rules proposed by the Commission would have meant nanomaterials used in food additives would no longer have to be labelled on food products. However, given it is precisely as food additives that nanomaterials are mostly used in food products, if at all, this would have totally undermined the proposed labelling rules. Consumers would essentially have remained in the dark about the presence of nanomaterials in food products despite the clear provisions in the existing law to have labelling of all engineered nanomaterials in food products . Thankfully, the European Parliament stopped the Commission in its tracks and defended existing labelling provisions. Consumers have a right to know what is in the food they are eating."
(1) The European Commission had proposed a delegated regulation on the inclusion of engineered nanomaterials in the EU regulation on food information to consumers but included an exemption for food additives. This rejection means the Commission will now have to present a new proposal.