Use of chia seed in foodstuffs

The seed of the Chia plant (Salvia hispanica) is considered a novel food.

Sale of chia seed and chia oil is permitted under the Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1023 in the following food categories.

Chia seed (Salvia Hispanica)

  • bread products (maximum content 5 %, whole or ground chia seeds)
  • bakery products (maximum content 10 % whole chia seeds)
  • breakfast cereals (maximum content 10 % whole chia seeds)
  • fruit, nut and seed mixtures (maximum content 10 % whole chia seeds)
  • fruit juice and fruit/vegetable blend beverages: (maximum 15 g/day for addition of whole, mashed or ground chia seeds)
  • pre-packaged Chia seed as such (maximum 15 g/ day whole chia seeds)
  • fruit spreads (maximum 1 % whole chia seeds)
  • yoghurt (maximum 1,3 g whole chia seeds per 100 g of yoghurt or 4,3 g whole chia seeds per 330 g of yoghurt (portion)
  • sterilised ready to eat meals based on cereal grains, pseudocereals grains and/or pulses (maximum 5 % whole chia seeds)

Chia oil from Salvia Hispanica

  • Fats and oils 10 %
  • Pure chia oil 2 g/day
  • Food Supplements as defined in Directive 2002/46/EC 2 g/day

More detailed conditions of use and the labelling requirements are set out in the relevant regulation. 

Listed here are examples of products containing chia and the authorisation status of such products in the EU food market. The interpretations have been arrived at in consultation with the Commission and the Member States. 

Product   description Authorisation status Grounds
Chia jellies or puddings (incl. a product called Chia pod) Not authorised Considered a dessert not included in authorised food groups
Yoghurt with a separately packaged chia seed mixture in the lid Authorised The mixture in the lid is considered to be part of the ‘breakfast cereals’ food group and the   seed is packaged separately from the yoghurt
Porridge containing chia seed Authorised Considered to be included in the ‘breakfast cereals’ food group
Creamy dessert containing chia seed Not authorised Dessert is not an authorised food group
Tea-based drink containing added chia seed Not authorised Unauthorised food group
Rice drink containing chia seed Not authorised Unauthorised food group
Fruit juice based chia smoothie Authorised Considered to be included in the ‘fruit juice mixtures’ food group
Chia seed served as a roll filling Not authorised Authorised for use in baking rolls, not as roll filling
Chia seed served as a salad filling Not authorised Unauthorised food group
Products where chia seed is packaged separately from the actual product, e.g. in the lid Authorised Chia seed may be sold in pre-packaged form if the label specifies a maximum daily intake of 15 g
Loose sale Not authorised Chia seed may be sold in pre-packaged form if the label specifies a maximum daily intake of 15   g
Vegetable pie containing chia seed Authorised Considered to be included in the ‘bakery products’ food group