Montana-based glucosamine supplier TSI Group has affirmed its wholly-owned Chinese facility meets strict new importation laws of the joint health nutrient.
The company said its plant achieved EU Good Manufacturing Process (GMP) for Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) grade material and therefore had no problems with the new import rules.
The plant is also EU food fishery approved (3200/02108).
The UK measures were introduced earlier this year to raise quality of typically shrimp-sourced glucosamine which has been prone to adulteration. Other animal-sourced suppliers like Willows in Ireland have also affirmed that their supply chain is secure and that importation continues.
TSI’s Xuzhou, Jiangsu, facility produces both animal and vegetable-sourced versions of glucosamine.
Food supplements themselves are not subject to the rules that came into play on February 1 this year, but consignments of fishery, bovine, poultry and swine-sourced are.
The rules also apply to chondroitin and chitosan.
“This development is an interim UK position, and we will work with the [European] Commission and other EU member states to develop an EU-harmonised position,” said the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) in a Q&A on the matter issued last year.
Euromonitor International has estimated the global glucosamine market to be worth more than €1.5bn.
“It’s clear that regulations governing quality control were necessary to ensure ethical standards and practices within the raw material supply chain,” said TSI Group CEO Joe Zhou in a statement.
The EU and other member states are looking at the position adopted in the UK and it is possible the same restrictions may be introduced across the EU’s 28 member states.
Glucosamine and chitosan are commonly derived from shrimp shells whereas chondroitin is derived from cartilage, usually shark origin but can also of beef, pork or poultry origin.
Vegetarian sources of glucosamine include corn.