March 27, 2020

In the 21st meeting of the Stakeholder Program for Infant Formula and Adult Nutritionals (SPIFAN) on March 12, stakeholders advanced three new Standard Method Performance Requirements (SMPRs) as written.

The draft SMPRs were presented for review by Working Group chairs and put to a hand vote, which allows them to advance to an official email ballot for final approval. The first two draft SMPRs, for Human Milk Oligosaccharides, were presented by Yannnis Vrasidas of Eurofins, including 2′-FL and LNnT in infant formula. The third draft SMPR, Lactoferrin in infant formula, was presented by Jeff Shippar of Eurofins and Martine van Gool of Friesland/Campina.

The vote came as part of a full day of deliberations that started with some updates on SPIFAN global engagement, including a presentation on a single lab validation by the AOAC India Section to extend an existing AOAC Minerals and Trace Elements method for Indian matrices and verify its fitness for purpose. Infant formula and adult nutrition products in India contain malt and cereals, apart from milk and soy, that were not part of the original study.

Darryl Sullivan of Eurofins

Dr. Darryl Sullivan of Eurofins reviewed recent progress with Codex as part of ongoing submission of joint AOAC/ISO/IDF methods. Currently, 16 SPIFAN methods are Codex Type II; five methods for vitamins, choline and carnitine, beta carotene and lycopene, fructans, and biotin are being reviewed for endorsement; and five Type II methods are being re-typed as Type III.

The AOAC SPIFAN Nutrients Expert Review Panel reviewed progress in an initiative to re-examine First Action review and update the methods currently in Chapter 50 of the Official Methods of Analysis, some of which have not yet achieved Final Action status. The group examined methods for vitamins A, E, B12, D, Folate, and Inositol to identify those that have not amassed evidence of reproducibility and to determine if they still have utility, are being used, and are performing well. They also reviewed specific comments from the U.S. TAG for ISO/TC 34. Currently, there are three ISO draft international standards up for vote for carotenoids and carnitine/choline. These standards are technically equivalent to AOAC Final Action Official Methods for these nutrients.

Participating remotely due to travel restrictions, Chen Zheng, Deputy Secretary-General of the Chinese Institute of Food Science and Technology, requested input on two draft standards (Vitamin C and carnitine/choline) that are relevant to infant formula.