Bad news for bread, pizza and burger lovers. The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a nonprofit organization in New Delhi, found the high content of toxic chemicals in renowned brands of bread. Researchers have revealed that these chemicals can cause thyroid problems and cancer. The Union Health Ministry has put forward an order demanding further investigation into the situation.
CSE disclosed a number of multinational brands like KFC, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Subway, Slice of Italy and Dominos whose products have a high content of toxic chemicals.
Chandra Bhushan, the Deputy Director of CSE, says a regular breakfast for many people consists of two-three slices of bread, which are enough to cause thyroid or cancer.
The organization collected 38 samples from different brands to test them for Potassium Iodate and Potassium Bromate. As high as 84% of the samples tested positive but the content of toxic chemicals is much higher in white bread than in multi-grain.
The World Health Organization (WHO) warned against the use of Potassium Iodate and Bromate in flour for baking because of its damaging effects on the body. 40 countries including Sri Lanka and China have banned these chemicals but in India, no actions have been taken to prevent the use of these toxic ingredients.
JP Nadda, the Health Minister, after learning about the report remarked that there is no reason to worry and further actions have been taken in this matter.
The All India Bread Manufacturers Association have released a statement that they were yet to see the report and the use of both the chemicals are permitted by the Food safety and Standards Authority of India in limited quantities of 50ppm for bread and 20ppm for baking purposes.
They also added that these quantities are considered safe in many places and are extensively used in countries such as the US.
Statements denying the use of both the chemicals have been released by Slice of Bread, Dominos, and Britannia.
The study has found high amounts of chemicals in food items of reputed brands like harvest Gold and Perfect Bread. Bread, bun, pav, white bread and sandwich are the main items treated with Potassium iodate and Bromate.