Traditional Food from a third country
Jatropower pursues approval of edible Jatropha curcas (Xuta) as a “Traditional Food from a third country”
Jatropower’s notification, “Roasted and ground Xuta (edible variety of Jatropha curcas L.) seed kernels as traditional food from a third country” to the EU, was validated by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in October 2021. On 5th July, 2022 we received an official communication from the EU, which mentioned the objections that hinder the approval of Xuta kernel powder as a “traditional food from a third country”. The EU communication, however, pointed out that a revised Notification addressing the objections raised can be submitted according to Article 16 of the EU Regulation (EU) 2015/2283.
The objections raised in the EU communication relate to (i) the insufficient information on the intended uses and use levels of Xuta powder to allow for a proper intake exposure assessment, which will enable calculation of a margin of exposure (MOE) based on the no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) for phorbol esters, and (ii) limited knowledge and the resulting uncertainties regarding the genotoxic potential of phorbol esters and thus of the traditional food.
Jatropower’s measurements have shown that phorbol esters are completely absent in the kernels of its Xuta varieties and is therefore confident of being able to redress the objections convincingly with analysis data based on the methods suggested in the EFSA technical report, including those from a genotoxicity analysis of Xuta kernels.
Further, the related EFSA technical report has suggested a revision of specifications for the roasted and ground Xuta kernel meal (e.g., to include more detailed microbiological parameters and a lower limit-value for possible phorbol ester contamination). We would like to thank the EFSA Scientific Committee for the recommendations and constructive criticism.
A revised notification, addressing the objections and incorporating the recommendations will be submitted at the earliest to enable approval of edible Jatropha curcas L. as a “Traditional food from a third country” to allow a broader supply base for this highly nutritious food item.
Parallelly, it is encouraging that the European Commission has included Jatropha curcas L. (edible variety kernels) in the Union List of “Novel foods”.