Safety of cassia gum as a feed additive for dogs and cats based on a dossier submitted by Intercolloid (UK) Ltd
The additive cassia gum consists mainly of high-molecular weight polysaccharides composed primarily of a linear chain of 1,4-b-D-mannopyranose units with 1,6-linked a-D-galactopyranose units. In 2014, the Panel on Additives and Products or Substances used in Animal Feed (FEEDAP) delivered an opinion on the safety and efficacy of cassia gum. The FEEDAP Panel concluded, based on positive findings observed in a bacterial reverse mutation test with a semirefined cassia gum (about 70 mg anthraquinones/kg) but not with purified semirefined cassia gum that meets the specification as a food additive (< 0.5 mg anthraquinones/kg), that only purified semirefined cassia gum that meets the specifications of cassia gum as a food additive can be considered safe for cats and dogs, at a maximum content of 1.5% cassia gum (15,000 mg/kg feed) in dry matter, corresponding to 1.32% (13,200 mg/kg feed) in a standardised complete feed with 12% water content. Following this opinion, the European Commission gave the possibility to the applicant to submit complementary information in order to complete the assessment on the safety for all animal species. The new data submitted, describing a reproduction study in cats, do not address the potential of the additive to exert mutagenic effects, and do not allow conclusions to be drawn on the safety of semirefined cassia gum with an anthraquinone content higher than the one specified for the use as a food additive (< 0.5 mg/kg). The FEEDAP Panel is not in the position to modify the conclusions reached in the previous opinion.