The excessive intake of vitamins and minerals may result in adverse effects and therefore official bodies deem it necessary to set maximum safe levels for them in food supplements. The Directive 2002/46/EC on food supplements envisages the setting of maximum and minimum amounts of vitamins and minerals in supplements. Although, in recent years, different models for maximum quantity derivations have been developed and discussed in Germany and other European countries, there are no legally binding maximum levels at a European level. At EU level, EFSA provides scientific advice on the setting of tolerable upper levels of intakes for vitamins and minerals to the European Commission (for more information please check EFSA tolerable upper intake levels for vitamins and minerals and overview on tolerable upper intake levels.

There are nevertheless EU countries that set their own maximum levels in national regulations based on the risk assessment of their local scientific bodies, e.g. Belgium (to know more about it, click here).

In January 2018, the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) in Germany published their revised recommendations on maximum levels for vitamins and minerals in food supplements on the basis of new scientific findings. To have access to their latest recommendations, please click here (in German only). There are concerns that these safety limits are to some extent conservative (read more). In spite of this, these recommendations are not legally binding.

– 14.02.2018

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