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Animal Feed


In the EU, animal feed ingredients can be categorised into two main groups:

  • Feed materials

  • Feed additives

Feed materials are products of vegetable or animal origin, whose main purpose is to meet the nutritional needs of animals and which are used for oral feeding.

In the majority of cases, feed materials do not require a pre-market safety assessment, which means that this offers a quick & easy route to market.

Feed additives are substances, micro-organisms or preparations, other than feed materials and premixtures, which are intentionally added to feed or water in order to perform a particular function. These functions fall into distinct feed additive categories & within each category there are functional groups which describe the specific function of the additive.

The feed additive categories are:

  1. Technological additives: which are substances added to feed for a technological purpose. These additives have a specific effect on the feed;

  2. Sensory additives: which are any substances added to feed to improve the flavour of feed or to improve the colour of products derived from animals;

  3. Nutritional additives: which are substances that have a nutritional effect;

  4. Zootechnical additives: which are substances that have a positive effect on the animal or the environment;

  5. Coccidiostats and histomonostats: which are used used to prevent these protozoan parasites.

Feed additives require a pre-market safety assessment before being placed on the market in the EU & UK. This means building a feed additive dossier that supports the identity, quality, safety & efficacy of the additive. The dossier is then evaluated by EFSA in the EU & the FSA in the UK. The time from dossier submission to approval depends on the feed additive category, but an average timeline is 1.5 - 3 years.


Feed additive authorisations also need to be renewed every 10 years. 

The majority of proteins for use in animal feed would be classified as feed materials, but if the proteins are derived from novel source materials or manufactured in a novel way, then a pre-market safety assessment may be required. 

Atova can help you to identify if your feed ingredient has a legal status in the EU & to identify the correct regulatory pathway for you to follow to be able to legally sell your product in the EU & UK.

To find out more, or to book a free consultation:

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