Views wanted on bacterium M. aurum by 11 April 2016

Last updated:
22 March 2016
A company has applied to the FSA for bacterium M. aurum to be approved for use in the European Union (EU) as a food ingredient under Regulation (EC) 258/97. Views are wanted on the company’s application dossier that the FSA will present to the independent expert committee (Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes) to inform its pre-market assessment of the novel food.

The applicant wants to market M. aurum as a concentrate of heat-killed M. aurum in water, with the intention that it be added to various foods including milk, dairy products, soft drinks, breads and food supplements.

About M. aurum

M. aurum is an environmental mycobacterium that lives harmlessly in the environment and can also be found in the gut of humans and animals as part of the normal gut microflora. M. aurum is a bacterium regularly encountered if drinking untreated water. The numbers are reduced if drinking treated water or bottled water.

About novel foods

A novel food is a food or food ingredient that does not have a significant history of consumption within the European Union before 15 May 1997.

Before any new food product can be introduced on the European market it must be rigorously assessed for safety. In the UK, the assessment of novel foods is carried out by the Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes (ACNFP), an independent committee of scientists appointed by the FSA.

Deadline for comments

Comments on this application are requested from the public to assist in informing the committee. Any comments on this application should be emailed to the ACNFP secretariat at by Monday 11 April 2016 and will be passed to the committee to assist in informing its assessment of this novel food ingredient.