EC Project for Reducing Acrylamide in Food Approved
European Union member states representatives voted in favor of European Commission’s proposal to reduce the presence of acrylamide in food.
Once implemented, the new regulation will require that food business operators (FBOs) apply mandatory measures to reduce the presence of acrylamide, proportionate to the size and nature of their establishment.
Commissioner for health and food safety Vytenis Andriukaitis welcomed the vote: ”Today we took an important step in protecting the health and well-being of citizens. The new regulation will not only help to reduce the presence of this carcinogenic substance but also will help raise awareness on how to avoid the exposure to it that oftentimes comes from home-cooking.”
The text will now be sent to the Council and the European Parliament. The two institutions will have three months to examine it before final adoption by the Commission. The entry into force could be foreseen spring 2018, according to the EC.
The Commission is also planning to initiate discussions on additional measures, such as setting maximum levels of acrylamide in certain foods without delay once this regulation is adopted.
On the other hand, Belgium officials said that the nation’s “friteries” have been saved. Some argue that Belgium’s traditional method of frying potatoes twice to get crunchy chips creates more acrylamide, but the Belgium’s farm minister said Belgian amendments were incorporated into the text. The Commission said the measure must be applied in ways “proportionate” to the size and type of establishment.
“The Belgian fry is saved! Europe has listened to Belgium,” agriculture minister Willy Borsus said in a statement retweeted by Prime Minister Charles Michel following the EU decision, according to Reuters.