Last July, Taiwan has become the latest APAC region to approve the use of 2’-fucosyllactose (2’-FL) – a human milk oligosaccharide (HMO) – in nutrition products for infant and young children. It was much later than other countries. It took about 4 years to get through the whole approval process (we had the dossier for application of non-traditional food ingredient ready in July, 2017). The reason is that HMO is produce via GMO bacteria and TFDA review committee concerns more safety issues. These also happened to other cases, like bio-conversed sweetener, bio-conversed protein, all had taken quite longer time to go through non-traditional food ingredient (the requirement from TFDA, Taiwan authority, being similar as novel food ingredient). The concerns are all related to safety assessment needs more evidence.
The other case is nothing to do with GMO while it is related with the solvent residues even it got NDI from USFDA already. Do we mean do not apply for non-traditional food ingredient with TFDA? Of courses we do not mean so. Just to share the experience of that TFDA is more cautious on safety issues. This even can be seen for the case of general foods.
TFDA also had updated mandatory food labelling regulation down to smallest permitted pack sizes in last October. The regulation includes specific information on the ‘minimum sales units’ of prepackaged foods, as well as added provisions to allow for the use of electronic labelling. Taiwan’s food labelling law is covered by the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation. The new provisions have recently been made to ensure that the necessary food safety information is made available on all prepackaged foods being sold to local consumers.