The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) Scientific Committee published this month a report on the Safety of Vitamins and Minerals in Food Supplements for Ireland. In the absence of maximum levels for vitamins and minerals at the EU level, this report is a guide for the food supplement industry to ensure that the daily dose provided by supplements containing vitamins and minerals is safe for the Irish population. The report provides tolerable upper intake levels (UL) by specific population groups from whom the food supplement is intended. A UL refers to the maximum daily intake of a nutrient considering all food sources and are not to be confused with maximum doses for food supplements.
A comparison between the ULs provided by EFSA (2017) and the ones included in this report showed that no UL recommendations were made for some vitamins and minerals such as vitamin K, riboflavin, vitamin B12, biotin, phosphorus and potassium for the Irish population.
The ULs for nicotinamide were found to be different between EFSA and FSAI recommendation. FSAI recommends much higher ULs for all age groups e.g. the UL for adults is 900 mg/day while the EFSA UL in the same age group is 300 mg/day.
Considering vitamin A, 600 ug RE/d for children under the age of 1 year is the UL for the Irish population. However, EFSA did not define any recommendation for vitamin A for this age group.
When it comes to calcium, FSAI provides ULs for the ages groups between infants and teenagers. These ULs were derived from the IOM.
Recommendations for vitamin C, sodium, chloride, iron and manganese ULs were also included in the FSAI report. In contract, EFSA did not establish ULs for these vitamins and minerals.