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CEN has published EN 1104:2018 for the determination of antimicrobial constituents in food contact paper and board. Conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019 at the latest.

SAFEGUARDS | Hardgoods NO. 029/19

Burgers served on food paper

In November 2018, the European Committee for Standardization (Comité Européen de Normalisation, CEN) published EN 1104:2018 ‘Paper and board intended to come into contact with foodstuffs – Determination of the transfer of antimicrobial constituents’.

This new standard supersedes EN 1104:2005 and contains several important changes. These include, inter alia, the following:

  • New definition for ‘Inhibition Zone’
  • Modification of the composition for nutrient medium of Sabouraud
  • Specifying the use of nine test pieces in total for tests with Bacillus Subtilis (clause 8.2.2)

According to the new standard, conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019, at the latest.

Major highlights of EN 1104:2018 and a comparison with its 2005 version are summarized in Table 1.

EN 1104 ‘Paper and Board Intended to Come into Contact with Foodstuffs – Determination of the Transfer of Antimicrobial Constituents
Version 2018 2005
Scope Method for the determination of transfer of antimicrobial constituents from paper and board materials and articles intended for food contact
Definition of ‘Inhibition Zone Obvious area in which growth is absent and which forms around test pieces placed on nutrient medium inoculated with a preselected test microorganism, due to the release of water-soluble antimicrobial constituents; proof of the presence of an inhibition zone is provided by the absence of test micro-organism growth (translucent zone) in a minimum of 2 mm width zone at the edges of the test pieces Zone formed around the test pieces, placed on nutrient medium, which has been seeded with a pre-selected test organism that releases water-soluble antimicrobial constituents
Composition of Nutrient Medium of Sabouraud
  • Peptone from casein, tryptic digest (5g)
  • Meat peptone (5g)
  • D (+) glucose (40g)
  • Agar-agar (10g to 15g)
  • Water (1000 mL)
  • Tryptone (peptone of casein) (5g)
  • Peptone (peptone of meat) (5g)
  • D (+) glucose (10g)
  • Maltose (10g)
  • Agar-agar (10g to 15g)
  • Water (1000 mL)
Remark Guidelines with illustrations for interpreting results are provided in Annex A
Effective Date Conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019 In force
Table 1.

SGS technical experts have extensive knowledge and testing experience in materials and articles in contact with food. They work to ensure that your products meet the appropriate regulations for food contact materials and pave the way for compliance. From overall migration test to expert advices on emerging regulations and compliance issues and documentation review, SGS is the partner to trust. Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or visit our website.

Next step

Stakeholders are advised to comply with the latest requirements for food contact paper and board for the EU market.

For enquiries, please contact:

Hingwo Tsang
Global Information and Innovation Manager
tel: (+852) 2774 7420

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