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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Food

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Select Committee on GRAS Substances (SCOGS) Opinion: Gum Tragacanth

The GRAS Substances (SCOGS) Database allows access to opinions and conclusions from 115 SCOGS reports published between 1972-1980 on the safety of over 370 Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) food substances. The GRAS ingredient reviews were conducted by the Select Committee in response to a 1969 White House directive by President Richard M. Nixon.

Gum Tragacanth

  • SCOGS-Report Number: 4*
  • Type Of Conclusion: 2
  • ID Code: 9000-65-1
  • Year: 1972
  • 21 CFR Section: 184.1351

SCOGS Opinion:

Since uncertainties exist with respect to the prevalence of allergies to gum tragacanth, additional experiments should be undertaken to evaluate the significance of its allergenic effects. A statistically-significant survey, conducted by practicing allergists, would help to determine whether significant numbers of persons are being placed in a state of receptiveness to cross -reactive allergies based upon lifelong daily exposures to gum tragacanth and the other two gums alleged to be allergenic-gum arabic and karaya gum. Gum tragacanth, fed at relatively high levels, is reorted to be toxic to pregnant animals of some species; hence, it may be advisable, in due course, to conduct feeding studies in several animal species, including pregnant animals, at dosage levels that approximate and exceed the current estimated maximum daily human intake. The Select Committee has weighed the foregoing and concludes that: The available information contains no evidence demonstrating that gum tragacanth constitues a hazard to the public when used in the manner and quantity now practiced.

*Complete reports containing details of the safety studies that formed the basis of the opinions and conclusions and are available from the National Technical Information Service (NTIS), 5285 Port Royal Road, Springfield, VA 22161 (703) 605-6000.