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Rule

Secondary Direct Food Additives Permitted in Food for Human Consumption

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is amending the food additive regulations to provide for the safe use of ozone in gaseous and aqueous phases as an antimicrobial agent on food, including meat and poultry. This action is in response to a petition filed by the Electric Power Research Institute, Agriculture and Food Technology Alliance.

DATES:

This rule is effective June 26, 2001. Submit written objections and requests for a hearing by July 26, 2001. The Director of the Office of the Federal Register approves the incorporation by reference in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51 of a certain publication listed in § 173.368(c), effective as of June 26, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written objections to the Dockets Management Branch (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Robert L. Martin, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (HFS-215), Food and Drug Administration, 200 C St. SW., Washington, DC 20204-0001, 202-418-3074.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

In a notice published in the Federal Register of September 13, 2000 (65 FR 55264), FDA announced that a food additive petition (FAP 0A4721) had been filed by the Electric Power Research Institute, Agriculture and Food Technology Alliance, 2747 Hutchinson Ct., Walnut Creek, CA 94598. The petition proposed to amend the food additive regulations in part 173 (21 CFR part 173) to provide for the safe use of ozone in gaseous and aqueous phases as an antimicrobial agent for the treatment, storage, and processing of foods.

The proposed use would include the use of this additive on raw agricultural commodities (RACs) in the preparing, packing, or holding of such commodities for commercial purposes, consistent with section 201(q)(1)(B)(i) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the act) (21 U.S.C. 321(q)(1)(B)(i)), as amended by the Antimicrobial Regulation Technical Corrections Act of 1998 (ARTCA) (Public Law 105-324). The petitioner is not proposing that the additive be intended for use for any application under section 201(q)(1)(B)(i)(I), (q)(1)(B)(i)(II), or (q)(1)(B)(i)(III) of the act, which use would be subject to regulation by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a pesticide chemical. The proposed use of the additive includes the use to reduce the microbial contamination on RACs. Under ARTCA, the use of ozone as an antimicrobial agent on RACs in the preparing, packing, or holding of such RACs for commercial purposes, consistent with section 201(q)(1)(B)(i) of the act, and not otherwise included within the definition of “pesticide chemical” under section 201(q)(1)(B)(i)(I), (q)(1)(B)(i)(II), or (q)(1)(B)(i)(III) is subject to regulation by FDA as a food additive.

Although this use of ozone as an antimicrobial agent on RACs is regulated under section 409 of the act (21 U.S.C. 348) as a food additive, the intended use may nevertheless be subject to regulation as a pesticide under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Therefore, manufacturers intending to market ozone for such use should contact the EPA to determine whether this use requires a pesticide registration under FIFRA.

FDA has evaluated data in the petition and other relevant material. Start Printed Page 33830 Based on this information, the agency concludes that the proposed use of the additive is safe, that the additive will achieve its intended technical effect, and therefore, that the regulation in part 173 should be amended as set forth below.

In accordance with § 171.1(h) (21 CFR 171.1(h)), the petition and the documents that FDA considered and relied upon in reaching its decision to approve the petition are available for inspection at the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition by appointment with the information contact person listed above. As provided in § 171.1(h), the agency will delete from the documents any materials that are not available for public disclosure before making the documents available for inspection.

The agency has carefully considered the potential environmental effects of this rule as announced in the notice of filing for FAP 0A4721. No new information or comments have been received that would affect the agency’s previous determination that there is no significant impact on the human environment and that an environmental impact statement is not required.

This final rule contains no collection of information. Therefore, clearance by the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 is not required.

Any person who will be adversely affected by this regulation may at any time file with the Dockets Management Branch (address above) written objections by July 26, 2001. Each objection shall be separately numbered, and each numbered objection shall specify with particularity the provisions of the regulation to which objection is made and the grounds for the objection. Each numbered objection on which a hearing is requested shall specifically so state. Failure to request a hearing for any particular objection shall constitute a waiver of the right to a hearing on that objection. Each numbered objection for which a hearing is requested shall include a detailed description and analysis of the specific factual information intended to be presented in support of the objection in the event that a hearing is held. Failure to include such a description and analysis for any particular objection shall constitute a waiver of the right to a hearing on the objection. Three copies of all documents are to be submitted and are to be identified with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Any objections received in response to the regulation may be seen in the Dockets Management Branch between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 173

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Food additives, Incorporation by reference.

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Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs and redelegated to the Director, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition,

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PART 173—SECONDARY DIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES PERMITTED IN FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION

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1. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 173 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 21 U.S.C. 321, 342, 348.

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2. Section 173.368 is added to subpart D to read as follows:

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Ozone.

Ozone (CAS Reg. No. 10028-15-6) may be safely used in the treatment, storage, and processing of foods, including meat and poultry (unless such use is precluded by standards of identity in 9 CFR part 319), in accordance with the following prescribed conditions:

(a) The additive is an unstable, colorless gas with a pungent, characteristic odor, which occurs freely in nature. It is produced commercially by passing electrical discharges or ionizing radiation through air or oxygen.

(b) The additive is used as an antimicrobial agent as defined in § 170.3(o)(2) of this chapter.

(c) The additive meets the specifications for ozone in the Food Chemicals Codex, 4th ed. (1996), p. 277, which is incorporated by reference. The Director of the Office of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. Copies are available from the National Academy Press, 2101 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20055, or may be examined at the Office of Premarket Approval (HFS-200), Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Food and Drug Administration, 200 C St. SW., Washington, DC, and the Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol St. NW., suite 700, Washington, DC.

(d) The additive is used in contact with food, including meat and poultry (unless such use is precluded by standards of identity in 9 CFR part 319), in the gaseous or aqueous phase in accordance with current industry standards of good manufacturing practice.

(e) When used on raw agricultural commodities, the use is consistent with section 201(q)(1)(B)(i) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the act) and not applied for use under section 201(q)(1)(B)(i)(I), (q)(1)(B)(i)(II), or (q)(1)(B)(i)(III) of the act.

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Dated: June 15, 2001.

L. Robert Lake,

Director of Regulations and Policy, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.

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[FR Doc. 01-15963 Filed 6-25-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4160-01-S