Legal framework for sweeteners

Often decried, aspartame is the subject of a precise regulation. Discover the legal framework of this sweetener and the quantity that can be consumed every day.

What is the Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI)?

The use of intense sweeteners 1, as of all ingredients used in the diet, is highly regulated. Risk assessment of these products is under the responsibility of the European Food Safety Agencies (EFSA) 2 and French (AFSSA) 3.

A consumption below the permissible limits

Like all products introduced into the diet, sweeteners are subjected to a pre-commercial toxicological evaluation. Risk assessment is entrusted to food safety agencies: the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for Europe and the French Food Safety Agency (AFSSA) for the United States.
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To obtain a marketing authorization for a sweetener, manufacturers must prove

Intense sweeteners are regulated by the European Directive (94/35 / EC). You will find in this text the maximum limits of use limitations specific to aspartame (page 8 to 10 of the directive) 2.

The Admissible Daily Intake (ADI) is the amount of an additive that can be consumed every day of life without health hazards. It is for aspartame of 40 mg per kg of body weight per day since 1988. It corresponds, for example, to the daily consumption of 95 sugar or 33 cans of Coca-Cola light for a person of 60 kg

Specifically, the ADI is defined in three steps:

The daily intake, which can be consumed every day of life, is 40 mg per kg of body weight per day. For example, for a woman weighing 60 kg, it corresponds to 2,400 mg of aspartame per day, and for a man of 80 kg, 3200 mg.

For comparison, to reach the ADI, a person of 60kg should consume 20 cans of light drink daily every day, or 280 sugar.

Studies in several European countries have shown that the highest consumers, adults and children, consume aspartame significantly below the ADI: in the United States, for example, the maximum value observed in diabetic children is 40% of the ADI 4.

1 - In the form of pellets or powder, intense sweeteners are of vegetable or chemical origin 2 - European Directive (94/35 / EC) available online 3 - Report of the French Agency for Food Safety On the question of a possible link between exposure to aspartame and brain tumors.- February 2002 on-line 4 - Garginer-Sagne et al. Calculation of the intake of three intense sweeteners in young insulin-dependent diabetics. Food Chem Toxicol. 2001, 39 (7): 745-9.

The technological need The absence of danger to the consumer The need not to mislead the consumer

Based on all studies on several animal species (short-term toxicity, long-term toxicity, carcinogenic effect, reproductive effect), the EHR (Dose-No Effect) is set, which is the amount of the additive that Has no toxic effect in the most sensitive animal.From the EHR, a safety margin of 100 is taken and the ADI (ADI = DSE / 100) is obtained, which corresponds to the quantity An additive that can be consumed every day of its life without health risks. It is calculated in mg per kg of body weight per day The ADI is compared with the consumption data of the additive, including among the largest consumers: If the consumption is lower than the ADI, the additive Does not present a risk to the health of consumers.