Recent Development

To harmonize its technical criteria on food additives with those of the European Union, Turkey has repealed the following three communiqués on the purity criteria of sweeteners, colors and other food additives and adopted a new regulation reestablishing specifications for all food additives:

  • The Communiqué No. 2002/27 on the Turkish Food Codex Purity Criteria Concerning Colors for Use in Foodstuffs
  • The Communiqué No. 2010/59 on the Turkish Food Codex Purity Criteria Concerning Sweeteners for Use in Foodstuffs
  • The Communiqué No. 2012/33 on the Turkish Food Codex Purity Criteria Concerning Food Additives Other Than Sweeteners and Colors for Use in Food Products.

Background

The Turkish Food Codex establishes the principles, methods and specifications regarding the procedures carried out on food products, such as labeling, use of additives, and collection of and analysis of samples. In this context, the repealed communiqués had been adopted to establish the purity criteria for food additives, based on the EC Directives No. 95/45/EC, 2008/60/EC and 2008/84/EC, respectively.

On March 9, 2012, the European Commission adopted the EU Regulation No. 231/2012 laying down the revised specifications for food additives and repealing the mentioned directives on the purity criteria of food additives.

Following this change, Turkey recently repealed the above mentioned communiqués and adopted the Regulation on Turkish Food Codex Specifications for Food Additives (the “Food Additives Regulation”) based on the EU Regulation No. 231/2012. The Food Additives Regulation introduces revisions to the technical and chemical specifications for the additives used in food products.

Although the Food Additives Regulation entered into force with its publication in the Official Gazette on April 3, 2017, it provides a transition period for food operators. Accordingly, food operators should ensure compliance with the Food Additives Regulation by December 31, 2017. Until then, they should continue to observe the requirements of the repealed communiqués.

Conclusion

With the new Food Additives Regulation come significant changes to the specifications for food additives. Therefore, food operators should carefully review the new specifications and take necessary steps to ensure compliance by December 31, 2017.