New South Wales Government Highlights Requirement to Identify Nanomaterials in Food and Cosmetics

In a wide ranging report covering the safety, applications, regulation and business potential for Nanotechnology, the Government of NSW have released a report on "Nanotechnology in NSW".

In addition for calls to increase the level of regulation and national mandatory reporting scheme for companies who use, manufacture, transport or dispose of nanomaterials, the committee also called for food and cosmetic labelling to explicitly highlight the presence of Nanomaterials.

Other recommendations included:

  • That WorkCover NSW work with those companies, or premises of which it is aware, that manufacture or use engineered nanomaterials of 300 nanometres or less in size in one or more dimensions, to promote workplace safety in the use of nanotechnology.
  • That the New South Wales Government work in cooperation with federal agencies on the development of a national mandatory labelling scheme for engineered nanomaterials used in the workplace, and that in the absence of a national scheme, NSW should proceed with investigating the development of its own mandatory labelling scheme.
  • That the NSW Food Authority develop an application to seek an amendment to the national Food Standards Code to require that food labels identify the presence of nanoscale materials.
  • That the New South Wales Government recommend that ingredient labelling requirements for sunscreens and cosmetics include the identification of nanoscale materials, during the review of the national regulatory frameworks.
  • That the New South Wales Government work in cooperation with federal agencies on the development of a national mandatory reporting scheme for companies who use, manufacture, transport or dispose of nanomaterials, and that in the absence of a national scheme, NSW should proceed with investigating the development of its own interim reporting scheme.
  • That the Office of Science and Medical Research, through investigation and consultation, determine what are the nanotoxicology research needs of most importance to the industry and research sectors in New South Wales.
  • That the New South Wales Government provide financial support to create enhanced nanotoxicology assessment capacity relevant to research and industry sectors in the State.
  • That New South Wales Government agencies that provide funding grants for research and development of nanomaterials or products containing nanomaterials with a view to their commercialisation require that a component of that funding be used to assess the health, safety and environmental risks of the material or product when those risks have not yet been tested or confirmed.
  • That the New South Wales Government develop, publish and endorse a comprehensive statement on nanotechnology, referring, among other matters, to current issues relating to nanotechnology, activity being undertaken at the State and national levels, and advice on where further information is available.
  • That the NSW Government establish a NSW Nanotechnology Unit within an existing department or agency to act as a coordination point for all other NSW agencies dealing with issues relating to nanotechnology, provide a central point for whole of government information on or enquires relating to nanotechnology, and proactively engage with industry in the promotion of nanotechnology.

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