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MERCOSUR Updates Technical Regulation for Food-Contact Metal Containers


The Grupo Mercado Común (GMC) of MERCOSUR (Mercado Común Del Sur or the “Common Market of the South”) approved GMC Res. 48/23, “Modification of GMC Resolution No. 46/06, MERCOSUR Technical Regulation on provisions for metal containers, coatings, utensils, lids and equipment in contact with food” on December 5, 2023. 

GMC Res. 48/23, previously known as Proposed draft resolution (P. Res.) No. 02/22 Rev. 1, includes the following amendments to GMC Res. 46/06:

  • Updates to the limits for certain impurities (e.g., lead, arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and antimony) in metallic materials;
  • Revisions to the list of stainless steel alloys authorized for use in food-contact applications; and
  • The addition of uncoated carbon steel (for limited applications) and passivated metals and metal coatings to list of raw materials authorized for use in contact with food.

GMC Res. 46/06 was previously amended by GMC Res. 16/20. A consolidated version of the amended GMC Res. 46/06 is not currently available. Thus, it is necessary to review all three regulations (46/06, 16/20, and 48/23) when evaluating the MERCOSUR compliance of a metal food-contact article.

GMC Res. 48/23 will now need to be incorporated into the national legislation of each MERCOSUR Member State. (For background on how food packaging materials are regulated by MERCOSUR, see the article, Update: Food Packaging Regulations in Latin America.)