PLANT food supplements: Levels of Intake, Benefit and Risk Assessment – PlantLIBRA
Coordinators: Prof. Patrizia Restani – University of Milan (IT) and Dr Luca Bucchini – Hylobates Consulting, Rome (IT)
The use of plants and plant derivatives to maintain health has been the popular choice throughout Europe for many centuries. Consumption of teas, digestive drinks, juices, elixirs and extracts prepared from botanicals for health maintenance has become part of European cultural heritage; plant food supplements are a modern-day extension of this process.
PlantLIBRA (PLANT food supplements: Levels of Intake, Benefit and Risk Assessment) aimed to foster safe use of food supplements, containing plants or botanical preparations, through increased science-based decision-making by regulators and food chain operators. To make informed decisions, competent authorities and food businesses need more quality-assured and accessible information and better tools.
ePlantLIBRA was designed to develop, validate and disseminate data and methodologies for risk- and benefit assessment, and implement sustainable international cooperation, which is essential to ensure the quality of the plants imported to the EU.
Supporting science-based decision-making and safe use of plant food supplements were the driving aims of PlantLIBRA shared by all partners. And, as with all EU-funded projects, these aims are aligned closely with policy, major regulatory bodies and stakeholders. In four years, PlantLIBRA delivered:
- A meta-database containing new and existing data on consumption, benefits, adverse effects, biological activity of constituents and contaminants, investigating methods to identify and control the PFS
- Accessible risk‐benefit models for PFS based on scientific investigation, which are able to provide data on assumptions as well as risks and benefits
- Dissemination of results to stakeholders to assist science-based decision making, enhance international cooperation and harmonisation, as well as consumers awareness.
PlantLIBRA received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 245199