Ensuring the safety of flavors used in the products consumers enjoy — and maintaining the public’s confidence in that safety — is the flavor industry’s primary goal. The Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association of the United States understands that the safety of the food supply is of paramount importance to all consumers, and we have a long history of evaluating the safety of flavors designed to enhance the enjoyment of foods and beverages.
FEMA’s Expert Panel has been independently evaluating the “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) status of flavor ingredients for nearly 60 years under authority granted by the United States Congress. The U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report in February 2010 that lauded FEMA’s GRAS evaluations:
“…The information provided by the association [Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association] enables FDA to be better informed about the composition of the food supply.”
“Actions taken by the Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association help FDA better ensure the independence of scientific assessment of the association’s GRAS determinations and obtain information about these determinations.”1
The FEMA GRAS program is well-regarded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other international regulatory bodies for its expertise, independence, and transparency. FEMA is committed to working with independent groups to ensure a better understanding of how the Expert Panel evaluates flavors and ensures their safe usage by food manufacturers.
1United States Government Accountability Office
Report to Congressional Requesters
Food Safety: FDA Should Strengthen Its Oversight of Food Ingredients Determined to Be Generally Recognized as Safe
February 10, 2010