In China's traditional food culture, some TCM ingredients are also often widely used as food ingredients. Those are considered both food and Chinese traditional medicine ingredients according to tradition (hereinafter referred to as food quality).
In this background, on a timely basis, lists of TCM ingredients also allowed for food use are issued, after an evaluation process that takes into account updated China âs traditional food habits, the Chinese Pharmacopoeia, local needs and international experience, food safety risks assessment determined through systematic research.
This list is very important because â under PRC Food Safety Law and related regulations â no TCM ingredient can be used in food, unless such ingredient is included on such list.
With specific reference to those six new ingredients, the real new-entry is Angelica, which is included in the 2015 Chinese Pharmacopoeia.
Chinese Angelica is indeed traditionally eaten as a spice and condiment, and also consumed as food in the United States, in the EU and in Japan as a spice.
Sand Ginger, saffron, black cardamom, turmeric, long pepper are included in the Chinese Pharmacopoeia (2015 edition) as well as in the GB/T 12729.1-2008 (âName and Condiments for Spicesâ).
The source plants and edible parts listed in the catalogue of edible drugs are consistent with those recorded in the Chinese Pharmacopoeia.
In practice, however, the six ingredients were already considered as cleared for food and CTM use since several years.
When these ingredients are used, it is recommended to processing them in traditional way (crushing, slicing, squeezing, frying, boiling, boiling, etc), or according to any specific regulated processing method (for example, for health foods, CTM, etc..).