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Mercosur Revises Food Contact Resolutions

SafeGuardSFood Contact MaterialNovember 26, 2021

Mercosur has approved three measures to amend its Resolutions on food contact materials and articles. Member states are required to transpose these measures into their national law before April 11, 2022

In October 2021, the Southern Common Market (Mercado Común del Sur, Mercosur) announced the approval of several Mercosur GMC Resolutions to amend three pieces of legislation on food contact materials and articles. These are:

  • Mercosur/GMC/Res. No. 19/21 Modification of GMC Resolution No. 02/12 – Technical Regulation on Positive List of Monomers, Other starting Substances and Polymers Authorized for Food Contact Plastics
  • Mercosur/GMC/Res. No. 20/21 Amendment of GMC Resolution No. 56/92 – General Provisions for Food Contact Plastics
  • Mercosur/GMC/Res. No. 21/21 ‘Amendment of GMC Resolution No. 40/15’ Technical Regulation on Food Contact Cellulosic Materials

Member states (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) are required to transpose these three Resolutions into their national law before April 11, 2022 – Mercosur GMC Resolution Nos. 19/21 and 20/21 are to be adapted 360 days following their incorporation into national law.  

Highlights of these three Mercosur GMC Resolutions are summarized in Table 1. 

Citation

Highlight

Mercosur/GMC/Res. No. 19/21 Amendment of GMC Resolution No. 02/12 – Technical Regulation on the Positive List of Monomers, Other Starting Substances and Polymers Authorized for Food Contact Plastics

  • New specific migration (SM) requirements for nine metals and their salts from authorized acids, phenols or alcohols:

    • ≤ 1 mg/kg aluminum

    • ≤ 1 mg/kg barium

    • ≤ 0.05 mg/kg cobalt

    • ≤ 5.0 mg/kg copper

    • ≤ 48.0 mg/kg iron

    • ≤ 0.6 mg/kg lithium

    • ≤ 0.6 mg/kg manganese

    • ≤ 0.02 mg/kg nickel

    • ≤ 5.0 mg/kg zinc

  • ≤ 0.01 mg/kg (sum of SM of primary aromatic amines, PAA)

  • Adds 19 entries with restrictions/specifications to the positive list 

  • Amends 11 entries to the positive list, including a more stringent migration limit of 0.05 m/kg for bisphenol A (BPA) and prohibiting this substance in feeding bottles and similar articles for infants and children up to three years of age

  • Amends ‘Table: Notes on the column ‘Restrictions and/or Specifications’ (Part IV to Annex), including new entries 25 and 26

  • Adds one entry to ‘List of Authorized Polymers’ (Part V to Annex)

Mercosur/GMC/Res. No. 20/21 Amendment of GMC Resolution N0. 56/92 – General Provisions for Food Contact Plastics

  • Amends the requirements for overall migration:

    • 10 mg/dm², otherwise ≤  60 mg/kg for plastic containers and equipment with a defined volume or plastic containers and equipment intended to come into contact with food for infants and children under three years of age

    • 60 mg/kg for containers with closure systems such as lids, gaskets and stoppers if intended use is known, otherwise the unit is in mg/article if the intended use of the article is unknown

    • New requirements for coatings that are applied on containers with a volume of a) less than 25 L, b) equal to or greater than 25 L but no more than 10,000 L and c) greater than 10, 000 L 

    • ≤ 60 mg/kg for coatings applied to pipes or hose  

Mercosur/GMC/Res. No 21/21 Amendment of GMC Resolution No. 40/15 – Technical Regulation on Food Contact Cellulosic Materials

  • Adds three entries and amends one entry to the positive list – both with specifications (Part II to Annex)

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, paving the way for compliance. From overall migration tests to expert advice on emerging regulations, compliance issues and documentation review, SGS is the partner to trust. In the end, it’s only trusted because it’s tested. Discover more on our website and read our brochure.   

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