COT 2023 meeting notes

Agendas and papers for the meetings of the Committee in 2023.

Last updated: 15 December 2023

At their February meeting the Committee discussed a paper on existing health-based guidance values (HBGVs) for  T2 & HT2 mycotoxins and a discussion paper on the effects of pica during pregnancy along with a draft opinion on the safety of 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate phosphate as a monomer for use in the manufacture of plastic food contact materials; this is currently being treated as reserved. 

They also reviewed their 2022 Annual Report of the COT, an update on  actions taken subsequent to COT advice, potential future discussion items as part of horizon scanning 2023 and a draft scientific opinion from EFSA on the Tolerable Upper Intake Level 2 for vitamin B6.  

The committee continued to work on their first draft statement on the guidance levels for the fortificants in the bread and flour regulations and their second draft statement on the hepatotoxicity of  green tea catechins.

At their March meeting the Committee discussed a paper on Arsenic in the maternal diet, the first draft  of an interim position statement on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances and the Aircraft Cabin Air environment:

  • Basis of the regulatory values for carbon dioxide.
  • Volatile organic compounds in European aircraft cabin air: concentrations and comparison with regulatory standards.

The Committee considered  a review of the EFSA opinion on the safety of titanium dioxide as a food additive, focusing on reproductive toxicity, along with providing comments on a draft EFSA Public consultation on “Update of the risk assessment of mineral oil hydrocarbons (MOH) in food”.

The Committee were updated on CBD and viewed the draft report of the 2022 COT Workshop; both items are currently being treated as reserved. 

The Committee continued their work on the second draft statement on the guidance levels for the fortificants in the Bread and Flour Regulations.

At their May meeting the Committee discussed papers on the final EFSA opinion on BPA and on novel formulations of supplement compounds designed to increase oral bioavailability.  

The committee also discussed reserved papers on: Can coating, Committee Advice on the safety of the extension of use of steviol glycosides (E 960) from stevia leaf extract produced by enzymatic conversion (RP1084) and Committee Advice on the safety of the Approval of Steviol Glycosides (E 960) Produced by Yarrowia lipolytica (RP1140).

The Committee continued their work on a second draft statement on green tea catechins.

At their July meeting the Committee continued their review of the EFSA opinion on the safety of titanium dioxide, focussing on endpoints other than reproductive toxicity) and also considered an early draft statement.  They commented on the draft EFSA opinion on Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and discussed papers on emerging biotoxins: pinnatoxins, the assessment of the Codex report on food allergen thresholds and 1st draft statements on the aircraft Cabin Air Environment and ergot alkaloids.

The Committee continued their work on a 3rd draft sub statement on the potential risks from exposure to microplastics: inhalation route.

At their September meeting the Committee discussed papers on: A systematic review of the literature on dioxins and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), exposure to titanium dioxide in the UK population and the public consultation on EFSA’s 2023 re-evaluation of the risk to public health from inorganic arsenic in food.

They commented on the Draft Opinion on the evaluation of a recycling process (Reserved) and discussed an assessment of the risk of allergic reaction from fortification of non-wholemeal wheat flour with folic acid.  

The Committee continued their work on second draft position papers for Chitosan, Cabin Air quality and Bisphenol A (BPA).

At their October meeting the Committee the draft Evolving our Assessment & Future Guiding Principles – 2023 Workshop Report and considered how to take the recommendations forward, as well as considering a paper on the Potential Risks from Arsenic in the Maternal Diet.  

They commented on a presentation by the LiDO ToxAD PhD student who updated on his progress this year.

The Committee continued their work on :  Sub-statement: the potential risk(s) from exposure to microplastics: Inhalation route (4th draft) and the Review of titanium Dioxide- second draft statement  and the position paper on BPA

At their December meeting the Committee discussed papers on the risk of emerging marine biotoxins in British shellfish, focusing on pectenotoxins, and a scoping paper on advice on the risk to human health from consumption of bivalve molluscs (shellfish) harvested from UK waters associated with marine biotoxins.

They were also provided with background information on the regulation of food supplements, following correspondence from the Council for Responsible Nutrition.

 As well as a second draft statement on the safety of ginger supplement use in pregnancy, two discussion papers on Bisphenol A, they also commented on a draft EFSA Opinion on polychlorinated naphthalenes and a first draft the Plant-based drinks Working Group’s report (reserved). 

The committee also discussed the draft advice of the AEJEG on steviol glycosides and 2-Hydroxy-4-methoxybenzaldehyde (both reserved).