Regulatory Resources

Food Supplements


PAGB members can access detailed regulatory intelligence on OTC medicines  self care medical devices and food supplements (below) when logged in to this website (registration for PAGB members and associate members only).  This information is automatically emailed on a weekly basis to PAGB members who subscribe to our Regulatory Intelligence newsletter. Contact for more information about subscribing to this newsletter.

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PAGB’s Food Supplements Guideline

PAGB’s Guideline on the Marketing and Advertising of Food Supplements (updated 2021) provides detailed guidance on what you need to consider when planning and developing your marketing campaigns.  In the guideline, we explain and interpret the legislation relevant to food supplements advertising and provide examples of what you can and can’t do when advertising food supplements products to consumers.

The guideline, which is exclusively available to PAGB members, also includes an introduction to the regulatory framework for food supplements including the Nutrition and Health Claims Regulation and the Great Britain nutrition and health claims (NHC) register; explains PAGB’s review process for consumer advertising; and includes detailed checklists to assist members in preparing promotional materials which comply with statutory regulatory and self-regulatory requirements.

Further guidance on food supplements advertising is available here. (PAGB members only). Not a member of PAGB? Find out more about membership here

PAGB provides regulatory advice on food supplements to its members, contact to talk to us.

About food supplements regulation

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The primary legislation relating to food supplements is the EC Food Supplements Directive (Directive 2002/46/EC), implemented in the UK by the Food Supplements (England) Regulations 2003; separate similar legislation is in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, which is appropriate for these administrations. All foods, including food supplements, are also subject to the EU Food Information for Consumers Regulation (2014).

The Food Supplements Directive lists the vitamins and minerals which are permitted for use in food supplements. The safety of the substances on the list has been assessed and approved by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). The lists have been consolidated into Regulation 1170/2011 which has annexes for the vitamins and minerals which are permitted for use in food supplements and fortified foods. Other substances such as essential fatty acids, amino acids or other substances with a nutritional or physiological effect are also permitted for use in food supplements. The Food Supplements Directive includes the intention to establish maximum and minimum levels for vitamins and minerals in food supplements. The European Commission has not yet begun this work and currently the UK industry works to the safe upper levels established by the 2003 report by the Expert Group on Vitamins and Minerals and the EU Nutrient Reference Values (NRV) of vitamins and minerals which are set under the Food Information for Consumers Regulation.

PAGB is part of a coalition of trade associations, including the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance and the Council for Responsible Nutrition UK, which works to reduce non-compliance in our industry. All of these associations work actively with their members, regulatory authorities, policy-makers and the media to defend the reputation of the food supplements and functional food sectors across the UK and Europe.



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