On 30 October, France published a law which suspends the use of the food additive titanium dioxide with corresponding E-number 171. The measure has been taken based on article 54 of the General Food Law (EU Regulation 178/2002) which permits member state to take emergency measures where the Commission is considered not have acted adequately to a notified food safety risk. In April 2018, France had expressed safety concerns with the European Commission due to the publication of new scientific studies on titanium dioxide. The Commission then requested the EFSA to assess the studies. In its opinion of 26 June, the latter argued the studies were not conclusive on the asserted safety risks. Additional studies conducted under more realistic conditions would be needed. On that basis, the EFSA argued it would not reconsider its existing opinion on titanium dioxide as a food additive.
The Commission will have to put the matter to the attention of the other EU member states in the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health. It shall then be decided whether the measure should be extended - for instance to all member states - amended or abrogated.
Article 53 - LOI n° 2018-938 du 30 octobre 2018 pour l'équilibre des relations commerciales dans le secteur agricole et alimentaire et une alimentation saine, durable et accessible à tous - link