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South Korea Updates Food Additive Code (MFDS Notice No. 2021-94)

The categories of “caramel color” and “glycerin esters of fatty acids” are revised. The specifications of concoction are clarified. Six additives are permitted to be used in glucose, etc. Flavoring’s usage standard is established.

On November 19, 2021, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) unveiled the latest version of Food Additive Code1. The amendments are specified as below:

1. Re-categorizing the Additive Category (Implementation date: 2023.1.1)

(1) Caramel color

The previous “caramel color” category is replaced by four kinds of caramel colors: caramel color I, caramel color II, caramel color III, and caramel color IV, following different manufacture methods. The usage standards for the four kinds of caramel colors remain the same as the pervious “caramel color” category:

(a) Caramel color   I, caramel color II, caramel color III, and caramel color IV should be used   as color additives.

(b) Caramel color   I, caramel color II, caramel color III, and caramel color IV should not be used in the food items listed   below:

1. Natural food   [meat, fishes and shellfishes, fruits, vegetables, algae, legume vegetables   and pulses, and their simply processed food (peeled, cut, …)]

2. Teas (except   for solid tea, and liquid tea that is diluted for drinking)

3. Teas   containing ginseng or red ginseng components

4. Coffee

5. Hot pepper   powder, shredded hot pepper

6. Kimchi   products

7. Gochujang   (hot pepper soy paste), seasoned hot pepper soy paste

8. Health   supplement food containing ginseng or red ginseng components

(2) Glycerin Esters of Fatty Acids

The "diacetyltartaric and fatty acid esters of glycerol", "polyglycerol esters of fatty acids", and "polyglycerol esters of interesterified ricinoleic acid" are separated from the category of "Glycerin Esters of Fatty Acids" for different acceptable daily intake (ADI).

Previous category

Present category

Glycerin Esters of Fatty   Acids:

      Glycerin fatty acid esters (Mono- and di-   glycerides of fatty acids)

      Citric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Diacetyltartaric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Lactic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Glycerol acetic acid ester

      Acetic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Succinylated monoglycerides

      Polyglycerol esters of fatty acids

      Polyglycerol esters of interesterified ricinoleic   acid

Glycerin Esters of Fatty   Acids:

      Glycerin fatty acid esters (Mono- and di-   glycerides of fatty acids)

      Citric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Lactic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Glycerol acetic acid ester

      Acetic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

      Succinylated monoglycerides;

Diacetyltartaric and fatty   acid esters of glycerol;

Polyglycerol esters of   fatty acids;

Polyglycerol esters of   interesterified ricinoleic acid

The usage standards are established as well. The "diacetyltartaric and fatty acid esters of glycerol", "polyglycerol esters of fatty acids", and "polyglycerol esters of interesterified ricinoleic acid" are limited to be used as "emulsifier" or "gum base". The usage amount shall be a minimum amount to achieve the additive's physical, nutritive, and other technical effects.

2. Clarifying specifications of concoction (Implementation date: 2022.7.1)

The principle for using diluents in concoction and the permitted diluents are detailed. Two new types of concoctions are added as well.

(1) Diluents for Concoction

Food raw materials served as diluents can be added in concoction. In this case, the diluents shall be used for dissolving, diluting, or dispersing a food additive. The food additive's function shouldn’t be shifted by the diluents.

The permitted diluents for concoction are water, alcohol, vegetable oil, starch, wheat flour, dextrin, sugar, sugar syrup, oligosaccharide, glucose, fructose, starch syrup, other syrups, and molasses.

(2) Concoctions 

Two new types of concoctions are added: flavoring concoction and coloring concoction.

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