Skip to main content

Scientific Opinion on safety and efficacy of di copper chloride tri hydroxide (tribasic copper chloride, TBCC) as feed additive for all species

on the Wiley Online Library


Panel members at the time of adoption

Gabriele Aquilina, Georges Bories, Andrew Chesson, Pier Sandro Cocconcelli, Joop de Knecht, Noël Albert Dierick, Mikolaj Antoni Gralak, Jürgen Gropp, Ingrid Halle, Christer Hogstrand, Reinhard Kroker, Lubomir Leng, Secundino López Puente, Anne-Katrine Lundebye Haldorsen, Alberto Mantovani, Giovanna Martelli, Miklós Mézes, Derek Renshaw, Maria Saarela Kristen Sejrsen and Johannes Westendorf


The assessment carried out by the FEEDAP Panel is based on di copper chloride trihydroxide (tribasic copper chloride, TBCC) and TBCC formulated with starch to reduce dusting potential. Based on three studies in chickens for fattening and one in laying hens, the FEEDAP Panel concludes that TBCC is a safe source of copper for poultry with a margin of safety ≥ 10; the FEEDAP Panel extended this conclusion to the safety of TBCC for all animal species/categories up to the maximum total copper content authorised in feedingstuffs. The FEEDAP Panel does not expect substantial differences in the metabolic behaviour, particularly in the deposition of copper in edible tissues and products from copper sulphate and TBCC. Consequently the FEEDAP Panel considers that exposure of the consumer to copper from food of animal origin would not be essentially modified by the replacement of copper sulphate by TBCC in feed. In the absence of data, TBCC should be considered as a potential irritant to skin and eyes, and a potential skin sensitiser. The risk of respiratory exposure for the formulated TBCC/starch product is considered to be minimal. The FEEDAP Panel considers that the use of TBCC in feed does not represent additional risks to the environment, compared to other sources of copper which it will substitute, provided that the maximum authorised total copper content in feedingstuffs is not exceeded. Bioequivalence between TBCC and copper sulphate with regards to copper liver deposition, plasma levels of ceruloplasmin and copper, egg weight and laying hen performance, and growth of piglets was demonstrated in 11 experiments. The FEEDAP Panel concludes that TBCC is an effective source of copper for all animal species.

Related topic(s)

Basic copper chloride