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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21

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The information on this page is current as of April 1 2018.

For the most up-to-date version of CFR Title 21, go to the Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR).

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Help | More About 21CFR
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 21, Volume 3]
[Revised as of April 1, 2018]
[CITE: 21CFR186.1]



TITLE 21--FOOD AND DRUGS
CHAPTER I--FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER B--FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED)

PART 186 -- INDIRECT FOOD SUBSTANCES AFFIRMED AS GENERALLY RECOGNIZED AS SAFE

Subpart A--General Provisions

Sec. 186.1 Substances added indirectly to human food affirmed as generally recognized as safe (GRAS).

(a) The indirect human food ingredients listed in this part have been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration and affirmed to be generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for the purposes and under the conditions prescribed, providing they comply with the purity specifications listed in this part or, in the absence of purity specifications, are of a purity suitable for their intended use in accordance with 170.30(h)(1) of this chapter. Certain ingredients in this part may also be used in food-contact surfaces in accordance with parts 174, 175, 176, 177, 178 or 179.45 of this chapter. Ingredients affirmed as GRAS for direct use in part 184 of this chapter are also GRAS as indirect human food ingredients in accordance with 184.1(a) of this chapter.

(b) The regulations in this part do not authorize direct addition of any food ingredient to a food. They authorize only the use of these ingredients as indirect ingredients of food, through migration from their immediate wrapper, container, or other food-contact surface. Any ingredient affirmed as GRAS in this part shall be used in accordance with current good manufacturing practice. For the purpose of this part, current good manufacturing practice includes the requirements that an indirect human food ingredient be of a purity suitable for its intended use, and that it be used at a level no higher than reasonably required to achieve its intended technical effect in the food-contact article.

(1) If the ingredient is affirmed as GRAS with no limitations on its conditions of use other than current good manufacturing practice, it shall be regarded as GRAS if its conditions of use are consistent with the requirements of paragraphs (b), (c), and (d) of this section. When the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) determines that it is appropriate, the agency will describe one or more current good manufacturing practice conditions of use in the regulation that affirms the GRAS status of the indirect ingredient. For example, when the safety of an ingredient has been evaluated on the basis of limited conditions of use, the agency will describe in the regulation that affirms the GRAS status of the indirect ingredient, one or more of these limited conditions of use, which may include the category of food-contact surface(s), technical effect(s) or functional use(s) of the indirect ingredient, and the level(s) of use. If the ingredient is used under conditions that are significantly different from those described in the regulation, such use of a substance may not be GRAS. In such a case, a manufacturer may not rely on the regulation as authorizing that use but shall have a basis to conclude that the use is GRAS or shall use the ingredient in accordance with a food additive regulation.

(2) If the ingredient is affirmed as GRAS with specific limitation(s), it shall be used in food-contact surfaces only within such limitation(s), including the category of food-contact surface(s), the functional use(s) of the ingredient, and the level(s) of use. Any use of such an ingredient not in full compliance with each such established limitation shall require a food additive regulation.

(3) If the ingredient is affirmed as GRAS for a specific use, prior to general evaluation of use of the ingredient, other uses may also be GRAS.

(c) The listing of a food ingredient in this part does not authorize the use of such substance for the purpose of adding the ingredient to the food through extraction from the food-contact surface.

(d) The listing of a food ingredient in this part does not authorize the use of such substance in a manner that may lead to deception to the consumer or to any other violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the Act).

(e) If the Commissioner of Food and Drugs is aware of any prior sanction for use of an ingredient under conditions different from those proposed to be affirmed as GRAS, he will concurrently propose a separate regulation covering such use of the ingredient under part 181 of this chapter. If the Commissioner is unaware of any such applicable prior sanction, the proposed regulation will so state and will require any person who intends to assert or rely on such sanction to submit proof of its existence. Any regulation promulgated pursuant to this section constitutes a determination that excluded uses would result in adulteration of the food in violation of section 402 of the Act, and the failure of any person to come forward with proof of such an applicable prior sanction in response to the proposal will constitute a waiver of the right to assert or rely on such sanction at any later time. The notice will also constitute a proposal to establish a regulation under part 181 of this chapter, incorporating the same provisions, in the event that such a regulation is determined to be appropriate as a result of submission of proof of such an applicable prior sanction in response to the proposal.

[42 FR 14658, Mar. 15, 1977, as amended at 48 FR 48457, 48459, Oct. 19, 1983; 81 FR 55051, Aug. 17, 2016]

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