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Food Additives

28 April 2009 1,062 views No Comment

If you do take the time to read the labels on the processed foods you buy, you’re bound to notice that they usually list some additives and preservatives. Virtually all processed foods contain one or more of these chemical substances, most of which are synthetically produced.

In the highly competitive food industry, attractiveness success, and economy are all essential to financial success. Additives and preservatives can contribute to all three of these qualities. Before sentatives of the food industry claim that without additives and preservatives, our food supply would be considerably less in amount and variety. Moreover, food-borne diseases such as botulism and salmonella would be a constant danger.

The law requires manufacturer to test for the safety of food additives, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) must approve their use in food. No chemical that is found to be a health hazard may be added to food. But in spite of these regulations, both independent and government studies indicate that some food additives now in use are not as safe as was formerly believed. For example, the safety of nitrites (added to bacon and other market meats to preserves and enhance color) is now being investigated in Indonesia. Some additives that were once widely used such as carbon black and red dye have been banned.

Controversy over the safety and benefits of food additives and preservatives will continue, but it seem unlikely that the days of natural food will over return, except among small group of people who grow their own food.

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