Safety and efficacy of lactic acid and calcium lactate when used as technological additives for all animal species
This opinion concerns the re-authorisation of lactic acid and calcium lactate for use as preservatives in feed and a new authorisation for lactic acid as a preservative in water for drinking. The maximum level of 50 000 mg lactic acid/kg complete feed and 30 000 mg calcium lactate/kg complete feed are considered safe for functional ruminants and pigs. The maximum safe concentration in water for drinking for pigs can be derived from the maximum safe level in feed (15 000 mg lactic acid/L water). No conclusions on the safety of lactic acid in pre-ruminants and poultry can be drawn. These conclusions cannot be extrapolated to other animal species/categories. The use of lactic acid and calcium lactate as feed additives is safe for the consumer. Lactic acid is considered an irritant to eyes and skin and there is a risk of serious damage to the eyes. Inhalation of the mist causes irritation of the respiratory system. Calcium lactate should be considered an irritant to skin, eyes and the respiratory tract. It is likely that handling the additive will result in the production of respirable dust, which could present a risk to unprotected workers. The use of lactic acid and calcium lactate in animal nutrition would not pose a risk to the environment, provided that the concentrations regarded as safe for the target species are not exceeded. Lactic acid and calcium lactate are used in food as preservatives. It is reasonable to expect that the effect seen in food will be observed in feed when these additives are used at comparable concentrations and under similar conditions. However, the Panel has reservations about the effectiveness of lactic acid and calcium lactate as preservatives in complete feedingstuffs with a typical moisture content of ≤ 12 %.