Dáil Éireann - Volume 662 - 30 September, 2008
Written Answers. - EU Directives.
Deputy Jan O’Sullivan Deputy Jan O’Sullivan
Deputy Jan O’Sullivan asked the Minister for Health and Children the progress on Ireland’s request for derogations for particular supplements under the EU Food Supplements Directive 2002/46/EC; the derogations sought; if she is satisfied that they address the concerns expressed by consumers here; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [32227/08]
Deputy Mary Wallace Deputy Mary Wallace
Deputy Mary Wallace: Derogations sought under EU Directive 2002/46/EC relate to food ingredients rather than particular food supplements. Twenty-one food business operators applied to the Food Safety Authority of Ireland for derogations related to more than two hundred different ingredients. Only vitamins and minerals listed in the Directive may be used in the manufacture of food supplements. However, a derogation from the legislation is allowed for products already on the market, permitting the use of vitamins and minerals not listed up to 31 December 2009. These derogations relate to commercial considerations rather than consumer concerns.
The Food Supplements Directive, 2002/46/EC, has been transposed into Irish law by Statutory Instrument No. 506 of 2007. That legislation is implemented by the Health Service Executive, under a Service Contract Agreement with the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI). This ensures that consumers in Ireland are protected by the harmonised EU rules on the sale of food supplements, in particular the labelling of food supplements and chemical form of  vitamins and minerals they contain. Discussions are ongoing at European level on the development of a methodology under which maximum safe levels for vitamins and minerals in food supplements will be set. Those discussions will permit the European Commission and Member States to further develop its thinking on this issue.
Dáil Éireann 662 Written Answers. EU Directives.