Food approvals are a complex subject because, in many cases, even if a material is approved for food contact, the components made by this material still need to be approved separately.
The current legislation requires that each material must not transfer to food substances in such quantities that it can result dangerous for human health. Therefore, positive lists of safe chemicals have been prepared.
Producers of raw materials, such as virgin polymer, (polymerization) stabilizers and additives (from synthesis process) generally certify their products directly with laboratories accredited and certified by Standards Bodies. The products are tested for specific migration analysis of the substances released versus the limits listed by the various Regulations.
Since thermoplastics compounding does not involve a process (extrusion) with chemical reaction of ingredients, compounders prepare a Declaration of compliance of the compounded ingredients to Food Contact Regulations based on the certification of compliance of Raw Material to food contact regulations.
Upon request, NILIT Plastics can provide food contact certifications according to the different regulations
In the European Community, the suitability for food contact is regulated by the Framework 1935/2004 that sets the general principles for materials intended for food contact.
For Plastic materials: in 2011 the reference norm Directive 2002/72/EC was abrogated by Regulation Nr EC 10/2011 that immediately became law for all the European countries
In the United States, the reference Regulation is the chapter 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations (under FDA competence) which sets the requirements that materials and additives (coatings, polymers and additives for polymers) must have when they come in direct contact with food.
NSF is a prominent international not-for-profit organization dedicated to the inspection and certification of products and materials that come into contact with food and drinking water.
NSF/ANSI 51 is the standard specifically written for materials and coatings used in the manufacturing of products in contact with food.