Standing Committee gives green light for marketing of lycopene from BASF
Ludwigshafen, Germany – March 10, 2009 – BASF has cleared an important regulatory hurdle in the authorization of its LycoVit® lycopene formulations in the European Union. The European Commission’s Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health has approved the marketing throughout the European Union. Formal adoption of the decision by the European Commission is expected shortly.
The carotenoid lycopene is responsible for the red color of tomatoes, water melons and grapefruit. LycoVit from BASF is nature-identical lycopene, it is specially manufactured for addition to foodstuffs. The nutritional ingredient is for use in fruit juice and sports drinks, spread fats, bread and various diet foods and food supplements. The advantage for the consumer: Clinical studies have shown that regular intake of lycopene in combination with a healthy diet can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and prostate cancer. Since it is an antioxidant, it can reduce the harmful effects of free radicals and help protect the cells. In addition, lycopene is a component of the skin’s natural protection against UV rays.
BASF has marketed LycoVit globally for years and it is used in numerous foods – except in the member states of the European Union. In the U.S., lycopene formulations have been recognized as safe for use as food additives since 2003.
“We really welcome the decision of the Standing Committee. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) already confirmed the safety of LycoVit last April,” says Dr. Bernd Haber, who is responsible for regulatory affairs in BASF’s Nutrition Ingredients Business Unit. “Consumers in the European Union will benefit from the approval because they will now be able to choose for themselves whether to take this physiologically important nutrient as a dietary supplement or in fortified functional foods.”
The Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health is concerned with the safety of foodstuffs in the countries of the European Union. It consists of representatives of the member states and is chaired by a representative of the Commission. The Committee's mandate covers the entire food supply chain, ranging from animal health issues on the farm to the consumer.
About Nutrition Ingredients
BASF’s Nutrition Ingredients business unit is a leading supplier of food ingredients and feed additives. The product portfolio for human nutrition includes vitamins, carotenoids, omega-3s and others. BASF offers products of outstanding quality produced with modern, state-of-the-art technologies. BASF also combines technical services and scientific expertise to meet the highest demands and to deliver the best value to the industry. Premium formulations are a key strength that has made BASF a leader in the industry. Further information is available under the following links: www.nutrition.basf.com and www.nutrition-ingredients.basf.com
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics and performance products to agricultural products, fine chemicals and oil and gas. As a reliable partner BASF helps its customers in virtually all industries to be more successful. With its high-value products and intelligent solutions, BASF plays an important role in finding answers to global challenges such as climate protection, energy efficiency, nutrition and mobility. BASF has approximately 97,000 employees and posted sales of more than €62 billion in 2008. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.