The industry association believes the Directive, which came into effect in June 2002, was “a springboard for the EU’s supplement sector to function effectively”.
Introducing supplements as a mainstream food category, the Directive gave customers confidence in the safety of products sold in the single market. It also had global influence, acting as “a model for regulation and a touchstone for formulating cross-border agreements for the international supplement sector”, according to FSE.
Protecting EU consumers
Patrick Coppens, FSE’s Director of Scientific & Regulatory Affairs, said: “The primary goal of the Food Supplements Directive, when it was adopted two decades ago, was to protect EU consumers. It has largely achieved this objective.
“As we mark the twentieth anniversary of the Directive, FSE believes now is a good moment to reflect on the future of the industry and on how supplementation can enable the EU to meet the social challenges we face.
“Europe is finally emerging from the worst of the coronavirus pandemic, which has encouraged many to think about the role of supplements in helping to increase resilience and maintain wellbeing.”
He added that accordingly, FSE is already talking to policymakers and other stakeholders about the value of supplementation for both individuals and society as a whole.
Building on success
Martina Simova, Chair of FSE, commented: “We can feel rightly proud of the positive impact of the Food Supplements Directive.
“For 20 years, it has provided clarity and nurtured an environment in which reputable businesses can operate and thrive. It has struck a balance between consumer safety and access to supplements.
“This anniversary gives us the perfect opportunity to explore how we can build on the success of the past two decades and give fresh consideration to the role of supplements in nutrition and health policy. Reflecting this, FSE’s work in the coming months and years will focus on how the industry can help EU member states achieve their health policy goals and build more resilient communities across Europe.”