Answer given by Mr Dalli on behalf of the Commission
The Commission would like to clarify that the substances biphenyl and 2-phenylphenol (also known as orthophenyl phenol) are no longer regulated by the legislation on food additives but by the legislation on pesticides.
The current status of these substances under the pesticide legislation (Directive 91/414/EEC(1) on the placing of plant protection products on the market and Regulation (EC) No 396/2005(2) on maximum residue levels of pesticides in or on food and feed of plant and animal origin) is as follows:
Biphenyl is not approved since 2004 by virtue of Commission Decision 2004/129/EC(3). Previously, it had been removed from the list of permitted food additives by Directive 2003/114/EC(4). According to Regulation (EC) No 396/2005, residues of biphenyl in food and/or feed cannot exceed the limit of analytical determination of 0.01 mg/kg.
2-phenylphenol is approved under Directive 91/414/EEC since January 2010. Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) have been set under Regulation (EC) No 396/2005. Both the approval and the MRLs are based on the risk assessment carried out by the European Food Safety Authority(5) that, for the supported uses on citrus fruit, concluded that there is no risk that the acceptable daily intake (ADI) is exceeded.