A scientific forum for innovative science that addresses and proposes solutions for the main challenges in safety and quality of food contact materials

Background

European citizens discard on average 157 kg of packaging per person every year, of which more than two thirds come from food. It is important to find a good balance between the benefits of packaging in terms of food protection and its impact on the environment.

Objectives

Recent improvements in food production and distribution have led to an increased sophistication of food packaging. A careful evaluation of food contact materials and their interactions with food is needed to ensure consumers’ safety at minimal environmental impact. This is at the core of the Packaging Materials Task Force activities.

Impact

  • Organised every four years and attended by more than 300 experts, the ILSI Europe International Symposia on Food Packaging provide a unique platform to discuss the science of the safety and quality of food packaging, supported by the most recent results of research studies presented as lectures or posters.
  • The proceedings of the 5th International Symposium on Food Packaging were published in Food Additives and Contaminants (A. Ariosti et al., 2014). Topics covered included bio-based coatings as potential functional barriers for recycled paper and board, food packaging design for sustainability, safety assessment of non-intentionally added substances (NIAS), migrations from food contact materials (FCMs) into food, the results from the European Union FACET Project to assess exposure to migrants and conclusions of a European Union interlaboratory comparison of the migration of regulated substances. The event attracted 290 participants from 38 countries.
  • Regularly updated, the nine ILSI Europe Reports on Packaging Materials focus on the most common materials used in the whole value chain of the food packaging industry, such as a recent report focusing on multilayer packaging for food and beverages (J. Dixon, 2011).They also address chemical, toxicological, legislative and environmental aspects.
  • The Guidance on Best Practices on the Risk Assessment of Non-Intentionally Added Substances (NIAS) in Food Contact Materials and Articles (ILSI Europe Report Series 2015) has been published online. The document provides definitions of NIAS and describes in detail good manufacturing practices, impact on the supply chain, chemical and toxicological characterisation of NIAS and their risk assessment, for both identified and unidentified NIAS. The guidance is considered by many to help interpreting and complying with the European plastics regulation that introduced the terminology NIAS.

What’s New

    • The manuscript on ‘Outlook and Challenges of Nanotechnologies for Food Packaging’ has been published in Packaging Technology and Science in June 2016.
    • A New Activity on the ‘Roles and Applications of in Vitro Bioassays in Safety Evaluation of Food Contact Materials’ will review the most relevant bioassays, their limitations and relevance in the context of packaging safety. It will determine what the relevant end-points are and examine what / how to perform bioassays testing, and establish guidance on the use of in vitro data in packaging safety assessment.

For more detailed information, please contact Dr Lucie Geurts at lgeurts@ilsieurope.be.

Task Force Members

Dr Thomas Gude – Chair Swiss Quality Testing Services – SQTS CH
Dr Sander Koster – Vice-Chair Nestlé CH
Prof. Wolfgang Dekant – Co-Chair University of Würzburg DE
Dr Marie-Hélène Bani-Estivals Danone FR
Dr Suzanne De Cort The Coca-Cola Company BE
Dr Françoise Godts DuPont de Nemours BE
Dr Monika Huber Mondelēz International DE
Dr Peter OIdring The Valspar Corporation CH
Dr Gabriele Pieper Tetra Pak DE
Ms Jana Seyfang FrieslandCampina DE
Dr Stamatios Stamenitis Mars (Wrigley) DE
Dr Heinz Traussnig Mayr-Melnhof Karton AT
Dr Charles Turner PPG Industries UK
Mr Peter van Herwijnen Dow Europe DE
Dr Lucie Geurts ILSI Europe BE

*Scientific Advisor

Expert Groups

6th International Symposium on Food Packaging 2016

Objectives

The ILSI Europe International Symposia on Food Packaging are held every four years and are internationally recognised as scientific fora to discuss and move forward the science that ensures the safety and quality of food packaging with minimal environmental impact. This multi-disciplinary meeting is of interest to those active in issues associated with the safety and quality of food packaging, particularly food scientists, chemists, mathematicians, physicists, packaging specialists, control authorities, regulators and risk assessors. It brings together those involved in basic studies, those responsible for bringing innovations to the market place and those in charge of ensuring the safety and quality of food contact materials.

Activity

The 6th International Symposium on Food Packaging will be held on 16-18 November 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. Registration is open.

The programme, will cover a wide range of subjects related to food packaging:

Progress in risk assessment
Keynote speaker: Dr Laurence Castle
Safety challenges arising from renewable and recycling food contact materials
Keynote speaker: Dr Lionel Spack
Safety-by-design
Keynote speaker: Dr Roland Franz
Innovation packaging and emerging technologies
Keynote speaker: Prof. Cristina Nerín
Future challenges in food packaging processing and food processing equipment
Keynote speaker: Dr Osvaldo Bosetti

Expected Output

This conference of experts will facilitate transfer of knowledge and bring innovative solutions to the most pressing issues in this field. The proceedings of the symposium will be submitted for publication in Food Additives and Contaminants: Part A and will include keynote lectures, oral papers and selected posters.

Expert Groups

Roles and Applications of in Vitro Bioassays in Safety Evaluation of Food Contact Materials

Objectives

There is an urgent need to better understand the actual safety significance of food contact materials (FCM) as a source of chemical exposure in human. According to European legislation, migration from food packaging must be safe. In principle, any NIAS should be evaluated and / or managed if relevant from a health risk perspective. While there is currently no consensus on how to identify and assess the NIAS of concern, it has increasingly been acknowledged that a traditional approach based on identification / quantification of all substances together with their full toxicological characterisation is neither practical nor desirable. In vitro bioassays may play a role in the assessment of complex mixtures of chemicals migrating from FCM. However, none of these have been specifically assessed for their suitability to address NIAS safety. Thus, the objective of the activity is to review the roles, availability and suitability of in vitro bioassays for safety assessment of FCM.

Activity

The expert group will clarify the roles, availability and reliability of bioassays for packaging safety assessment. More specifically, the activity will address the following points:

Define roles of bioassays in safety assessment of FCM
o To support application of Cramer class III-TTC;
o Others (hazard identification / characterization/Tox21);
o To identify chemicals of concerns in complex mixtures.

Determine the most relevant endpoints
o To support Cramer class III-TTC;
o For other purposes.

Examine the availability, quality and fit-for-purpose of bioassays
o Address repeatability, reproducibility (intra- & inter-lab.), selectivity and sensitivity, metabolism, suitability for high MW materials (e.g. oligomers) and mixtures;
o Establish criteria.

Interpret / manage data
Describe limitations and research needs

Expected Output

This activity will develop and publish a transparent guidance document on the use of in vitro data in packaging safety assessment agreed upon by all parties. The guidance will be widely applicable (in combination with the ILSI report on NIAS) and should contribute to safer packaging products. Consumer trust should be regained with respect to packaging safety, and business relationships should be improved within industry (e.g. food and packaging industry).


Workshop & Report – Completed
Non-Intentionally Added Substances (NIAS) in Food Contact Materials, 2-4 April 2014, Brussels, Belgium

Objectives

During the life cycle of food contact materials, unexpected and potentially harmful substances may migrate from packaging materials to food products. According to the European plastics regulation (Regulation EU 10/2011), NIAS have to be assessed using scientifically recognised principles of risk assessment. A clear description of what NIAS are and how the risk assessment should be performed for the many different existing types of NIAS is, however, missing. Current practice is that companies use internal but non-harmonised procedures to assess NIAS. The expert group aimed to produce a guidance document of what NIAS are and how risk assessment principles can be applied to NIAS derived from food contact materials.

Activity

The activity was grounded in the obligations under the Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). The group was not only exploring new and existing tools for transferring and exchanging information within the supply chain. They also looked into tools predicting the occurrence of NIAS. The expert group produced a practical guidance document / toolbox based on best-practice to apply risk assessment to NIAS from food contact materials, not only plastics. This document was reviewed in a stakeholder workshop hosted in Brussels, Belgium, on 2-4 April 2014. About 50 key stakeholders from industry, European authorities (e.g. European Commission – Joint Research Centre) and control laboratories involved in the risk assessment of NIAS discussed the best approach(es) to evaluate NIAS. They reviewed the draft guidance document prepared by the expert group to find consensus where necessary.

Output

The guidance document / toolbox is mainly intended for scientists involved in the evaluation of NIAS (analytical scientists, toxicologists, risk assessors form industry and academia, control labs), supply chain, the food industry and consumers organisations around the world. Additionally, the guidance document aims to be an ideal tool for young scientists involved in the safety assessment of NIAS. An ILSI Europe Report covering the discussions is now available online.

Packaging Materials 1. Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) for Food Packaging Applications

Objectives

The first issue of the ILSI Europe Report ‘Packaging Materials 1 Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) for Food Packaging Applications’ was published in 2000. The aim of this activity is to integrate recent scientific and regulatory developments on PET in an updated version of the manuscript.

Activity

This report was originally published by ILSI HESI in 1993. Due to scientific and regulatory developments, the report was updated by ILSI Europe in 2000. Fourteen years later, the ILSI Europe Packaging Materials Task Force is working on a new update of this report. The updated version will soon be submitted to the Board of Directors for final approval.

Packaging Materials 2. Polystyrene for Food Packaging Applications

Objectives

The ILSI Europe Report on ‘Packaging Materials 2. Polystyrene for Food Packaging Applications’ was first published in 2002. In view of recent developments in this field, an update of this report is necessary and is currently in preparation.

Activity

The updated version of the report will have major changes in the chapters on regulatory issues and on toxicological aspects. Minor updates will be made in the other chapters as required.

Outlook and Challenges of Nanotechnologies for Food Packaging – Completed

Objectives

While most nanotechnology applications for the food sector are currently at R&D or near-market stages, applications for food packaging are rapidly becoming a commercial reality. The objective of this activity was to review the potential benefits of nanotechnologies in food packaging applications and identify potential challenges in terms of consumer acceptance and safety and environmental impact during their entire life cycle. Migration and detection methods, risk assessment and regulatory implications were also addressed.

Activity

The group drafted a guidance document on the new opportunities and safety considerations of nanotechnologies in food packaging. A workshop was organised in February 2012 to gain stakeholders’ viewpoints on future directions of the technology and to find a way forward to deal with the associated challenges.

Output

This activity provides an up-to-date overview of the use of nanomaterials in food contact materials and the migration behaviour of nanoparticles from these materials into foods.

Expert Group Members

6th International Symposium on Food Packaging 2016

Dr Thomas Gude – Chair Swiss Quality Testing Services – SQTS CH
Dr Catherine Simoneau – Co-Chair European Commission – Joint Research Center (JRC) IT
Dr Marie Hélène Bani-Estivals Danone FR
Dr Emma Bradley Fera Science (FERA) UK
Dr Suzanne De Cort The Coca-Cola Company BE
Prof. Wolfgang Dekant University of Würzburg DE
Dr Françoise Godts DuPont de Nemours BE
Prof. Nathalie Gontard National Institute of Agricultural Research (INRA) FR
Dr Monika Huber Mondelēz International DE
Prof. Dietrich Knorr Berlin University of Food Technology DE
Ms Lisette Krul The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) NL
Prof. Cristina Nerín University of Zaragoza ES
Dr Peter Oldring The Valspar Corporation UK
Dr Gabriele Pieper Tetra Pak DE
Dr Lionel Spack Nestlé CH
Dr Stamatios Stamenitis Mars (Wrigley) DE
Mr Peter van Herwignen Dow Europe DE
Dr Cyril Marsaux ILSI Europe BE
Dr Stéphane Vidry ILSI Europe BE

Roles and Applications of in Vitro Bioassays in Safety Evaluation of Food Contact Materials

Prof. Wolfgang Dekant – Chair University of Würzburg DE
Dr Benoit Schilter – Vice-Chair Nestlé CH
Prof. Alan Boobis Imperial College London UK
Dr Karin Burnett Imperial College London UK
Dr Chantra Eskes European Society of Toxicology In Vitro NL
Ms Mélanie Jacquet Danone FR
Dr Christian Kirchnawy OFI Technology and Innovation GmbH AT
Dr Peter Oldring The Valspar Corporation UK
Dr Gabriele Pieper Tetra Pak DE
Dr Manfred Tacker University of Applied Sciences (FH Campus Vienna) AT
Dr Heinz Traussnig Mayr-Melnhof Karton DE
Mr Peter van Herwijnen Dow Europe DE
Dr Lucie Geurts ILSI Europe BE

“Non-Intentionally Added Substances’ (NIAS) in Food Contact Materials” – Completed

Dr Sander Koster – Chair Nestlé CH
Dr Marie-Hélène Bani-Estivals Danone FR
Dr Maurizio Bonuomo Barilla G&R Fratelli IT
Dr Emma Bradley The Food and Environment Research Agency (FERA) UK
Prof. Marie-Christine Chagnon Université de Bourgogne FR
Dr Françoise Godts DuPont de Nemours BE
Dr Thomas Gude Swiss Quality Testing Services – SQTS CH
Dr Rüdiger Helling Saxon Institute for Public & Veterinary Health – LUA Dresden DE
Prof. Perfecto Paseiro-Losada University of Santiago de Compostela ES
Dr Gabriele Pieper Tetra Pak DE
Dr Monique Rennen TNO NL
Prof. Thomas Simat Technical University of Dresden DE
Dr Cyril Marsaux ILSI Europe BE

Packaging Materials 1. Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) for Food Packaging Applications

Dr Thomas Gude Swiss Quality Testing Services (SQTS) CH
Dr Francoise Godts DuPont de Nemours BE
Mr John Howlett Scientific Advisor UK
Dr Annick Moreau Danone FR
Dr Mike Neal PETCORE Europe UK
Dr Frank Welle Fraunhofer Institut (IVV) DE

Packaging Materials 2. Polystyrene for Food Packaging Applications

Dr Suzanne De Cort The Coca-Cola Company BE
Dr Bart Brands Scientific Advisor CH
Dr Gordon Dawkins Styrolutions DE
Dr Monika Huber Mondelēz Europe DE
Dr Frank Welle Fraunhofer Institut (IVV) DE
Dr Gunna Würtzen Scientific Advisor DK

Outlook and Challenges of Nanotechnologies for Food Packaging – Completed

Dr Leonir Garcia The Coca-Cola Company BE
Dr Michael Adams Food And Drug Administration (FDA) US
Dr Maurizio Avella Institute of Chemistry and Technology on Polymers IT
Dr Canan Dogan TÜBITAK MRC Food Institute TR
Dr Gabriele Pieper Tetra Pak DE
Dr Monique Rennen The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) NL
Prof. Jochen Weiss University of Hohenheim DE
Dr Yves Wyser Nestlé CH
Dr Cyril Marsaux ILSI Europe BE

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    [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => 132d9031d44e4cce65e6a162eebfb179
    [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => 
    [thumbnails_cached] => 
    [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => 
    [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array
        (
            [0] => query_vars_hash
            [1] => query_vars_changed
        )

    [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array
        (
            [0] => init_query_flags
            [1] => parse_tax_query
        )

)