June 29, 2021

EFSA concludes titanium dioxide not safe as feed additive



Titanium dioxide can no longer be considered safe when used as an additive in animal feed, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concluded.


The assessment by EFSA's Panel on Additives and Products or Substances used in Animal Feed (FEEDAP) follows the conclusion reached by the organisation's Panel on Food Additives and Flavourings (FAF) that the same compound can no longer be considered safe when used as a food additive.


The FEEDAP Panel could not rule out concerns related to genotoxicity, which is the ability of a substance to damage DNA, the genetic material of cells.


Following oral ingestion, the absorption of titanium dioxide particles is low, but they can accumulate in the body. This, together with a lack of data, meant the panel could not conclude on the safety of TiO2 for animals, consumers and the environment.


Concerning user safety, titanium dioxide is considered potentially carcinogenic by inhalation.


Titanium dioxide is currently authorised for use as a colouring agent.