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How the Code deals with vitamins and minerals that are added to foods

(August 2018)

How the Code deals with vitamin and mineral that are added to foods

  • When a vitamin or mineral is added to food, the Code outlines requirements relating to the identity of the substance. For example only particular chemical forms of a mineral are able to be used. 
  • When a chemical form is used it has to be compliant with a relevant 'specification' as listed in the Code. 
  • Schedule 3 of the Code lists published sources for specifications relating to the identity and purity for the permitted forms of minerals. There are several sources listed. These specifications are internationally accepted 
  • Schedule 29 of the Code lists the permitted forms of vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes for infant formula products.

Hydroxyapatite & calcium phosphate - nomenclature and synonyms

  • The permitted forms of calcium phosphate listed in Schedule 29 of the Code are calcium phosphate monobasic, calcium phosphate dibasic and calcium phosphate tribasic.
  • The name 'hydroxyapatite' has been used as the common name for the group of calcium phosphate minerals with the general formula comprised of the minerals calcium and phosphate. It is not listed as a permitted form of calcium phosphate in Schedule 29. 
  • However hydroxyapatite is a synonym for calcium phosphate tribasic, as listed in international specifications that are recognised in the Code (for example, USP Food Chemicals codex and Commission Regulation (EU) No 231/2012 laying down specifications for food additives).  
  • The naming conventions for calcium phosphate tribasic compounds are complex and the specifications define the substance as a mixture of calcium phosphates with calcium, phosphate and hydroxide in varying ratios. These specifications also include different CAS numbers and molecular formulas.  
  • Calcium phosphate tribasic is not the only compound with complex naming and specifications. Both of the other permitted calcium phosphate compounds have several synonyms and different CAS numbers.
  • Calcium phosphate monobasic: calcium acid phosphate, calcium diorthophosphate, monocalcium orthophosphate)
  • Calcium phosphate dibasic: Calcium hydrogen phosphate dehydrate, Calcium Hydrogen Phosphate, Phosphoric acid, calcium salt 
  • Permitted forms of calcium phosphate should be compliant with international specifications listed in Schedule 3 of the Code.

Page last updated 6 December 2023