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CEN has published EN 646:2018 for the determination of color fastness in food contact dyed paper and board. Conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019 at the latest.

SAFEGUARDS | Hardgoods NO. 032/19

Mixed Vegetables in a Paper Plate

In November 2018, the European Committee for Standardization (Comité Européen de Normalisation, CEN) published EN 646:2018 ‘Paper and Board Intended to Come into Contact with Foodstuffs – Determination of Color Fastness of Dyed Paper and Board’.

This new standard supersedes its predecessor, EN 646:2006, and contains important changes. These include, inter alia, the following:

  • Revising and extending the scope of food contact paper
  • New definition for (unstained) glass fiber paper
  • Replacing ‘saliva simulant’ with ‘alkaline salt solution’ for reagent
  • Expanding the number of test condition procedures from two (A and B) to four (A to D)
  • Evaluation only against gray scale

According to the new standard, conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019 at the latest.

Major highlights of EN 646:2018 and a comparison with its predecessor, EN 646:2006, are summarized in Table 1.

EN 646 ‘Paper and Board Intended to Come into Contact With Foodstuffs – Determination of Color Fastness of Dyed Paper and Board’
Version 2018 2006
Scope
  • Testing of food contact dyed paper and board
  • Visual evaluation against grey scale for bleeding
  • Some procedures are dependent on the foreseeable use of food contact materials
  • Testing of food contact dyed paper and board
  • Visual evaluation against a blank to detect bleeding and grey scale for grading of bleeding
  • Use of two procedures (A and B) for long and short food contact applications
Reagents (Clause 6.3) Alkaline salt solution Saliva solution
Test Conditions Procedure A - Long Duration Contacts:
(23 ± 2) °C for 24 h
Procedure A - Long Duration Contacts:
(23 ± 2) °C for 24 h
Procedure B - Medium Duration contacts:
(23 ± 2) °C for 4 h
-----
Procedure C - Short Duration Contacts:
(23 ± 2) °C for 10 mins
Procedure B - Short Duration Contacts:
(23 ± 2) °C for 10 mins
Procedure D - Hot Contacts:
(120 ± 3) °C for 0.5 h in oil for fatty food
(90 ± 3) °C for 0.5 h in water for moist food
-----
Unstained glass Fiber Paper New definition includes a pH-value of 9.0 to 9.5 (ISO 6588-2) as one of the conditions Definition includes a capillary rise of 190 nm to 210 nm in 10 mins (ISO 8787) as one of the conditions
Evaluation Against gray scale only (EN 20105-A03) Against a blank or gray scale
Remark
  • Procedure A covers procedures B and C, and
  • Long-time duration for hot contact is covered by A and D
-----
Effective date Conflicting national standards are to be withdrawn by May 2019 Most Current - Active

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.

For enquiries, please contact:

Hingwo Tsang
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t: +852 2774 7420

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