working group on flavorings

The Flavoring working group consists predominantly of food chemists who work for flavorings manufacturers, users of flavors in the food industry, in official food monitoring, in commercial laboratories or at universities. The regular meetings serve the exchange of information and the formation of opinions. In discussions on current topics, consensual opinions should preferably be worked out. Where this is not possible, the exchange of experiences should contribute to an approximation of the points of view or at least to a better understanding of the other position. The results of the discussions also serve as the basis for publications by the working group.

The working group flavorings existed since July 1998 and is since then from about 20 to 25 active members and a varying number of corresponding members together.


In 2020, various media, including the Nachrichten aus der Chemie [Nachr. Chem. 2020, 68 (11), 42], reported on a new process for the electrochemical production of vanillin from lignin. It was claimed that "its quality, due to its reagent-free implementation, allows the designation 'natural vanillin'". The Working Group Flavorings has made clear that the vanillin produced in this way may not be designated as a natural vanillin as defined in Regulation (EC) no. 1334/2008 (Aromenverordnung). The clarification of the working group was published at the beginning of 2021 under the heading "Correspondence" by the Nachrichten aus der Chemie [Nachr. Chem. 2021, 69 (1), 95].

Head of the working group


PD Dr. habil. Martin Steinhaus
Leibniz Institute for Food Systems Biology
at the Technical University of Munich, Freising


Dr. Andrea Bosse
LANXESS Germany, Cologne


Frauke Kirsch
State Investigation Office Rhineland-Palatinate, Koblenz

Term of office 2020 - 2022

Focus of work

The working group deals with, among other things


  • the interpretation of the legal requirements for the production and use of flavorings
  • the development and evaluation of analytical test procedures
  • Methods for determining the authenticity of natural flavorings and their raw materials (e.g. vanilla)
  • the labeling of flavors
  • current research topics around flavors / flavorings
  • the observation of the toxicological evaluation of flavorings
  • the monitoring of the intake of aromatic substances
  • the publication of basic and position papers
  • the publication of brochures and letters to the editor



  • Clarification on the designation of vanillin from electrochemical oxidation of lignin, Nachrichten aus der Chemie (2021) 69 (1): 95 ( Link )
  • Brochure "flavorings - An important piece of food (food) quality", updated new edition (2019) ( pdf )
  • Policy paper "Origin and authenticity of vanilla flavors" (together with the Working Group Stable Isotope Analysis)(2010) ( pdf )
  • Brochure "flavorings - An important piece of food (food) quality" (2010)
  • Occurrence of allyl hexanoate (CAS-No. 123-68-2) in pineapple fruits (2007) ( pdf )
  • Authenticity of flavorings (with regard to: "Disclosure of procedures" and "traceability"), food chemistry (2004) 58:54 ( pdf )
  • Term "natural flavorings" with regard to: "overdosing" and "flavorings unprecedented in nature", food chemistry (2003) 57:44 ( pdf )
  • Enantioselective analysis for the naturalness assessment of flavorings, food chemistry (2001) 55: 24-26 ( pdf )

flavorings - an important part of food quality

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last modified: 25.04.2022 10:29 H from Translator