EU ministers have approved a revised and streamlined European directive on the market authorisation of food products for particular nutritional uses, giving the European Parliament a special watchdog role.

The new law allows the European Commission to approve for up to two years the sale of special nutritional food products, which do not comply with relevant EU rules on ingredients.

However, under changes agreed to the approval system, the European Parliament must be informed of any pending authorisations being considered.

EU member states must also be informed through a mandatory consultation of the EU’s standing committee on the food chain and animal health, MEPs said.