More than 100 products on shelves contain toxic materials
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
Nanoparticles are being incorporated into food, packaging and health supplements
Manufacturers boast that nanoparticles can deliver drugs or vitamins more effectively or kill harmful bugs in food. But scientists, consumer groups and green campaigners fear the technology is also introduced into the diet, body and environment without proper safety checks. Critics say it is not known how these particles interact with body and organs in the long term.
A recent report by Friends of the Earth said current regulations were "ill-equipped" to deal with the unique properties of nanoparticles. Despite concerns about the risks of nanomaterials, consumers were ingesting them since regulators were not able to keep pace with their expanding use.
The study found at least 104 food and agricultural products available in Europe which use nanotech particles or technology. This includes some nutritional supplements under the Solgar brand, cling wrap and containers, antibacterial kitchenware, processed meats, chocolate drinks, baby food and chemicals used in agriculture.
Friends of the Earth's food and farming spokesman, Helen Holder, said that Europeans should not be exposed to potentially toxic materials in their food and food packaging until proper regulations were in place to ensure their safety, and in the absence of proper safety regulations or mandatory labelling, consumers were being left in the dark about the products they consume and are unknowingly putting their health and the environment at risk.
A Government sponsored report said earlier that a shortage of money for research had created an absence of basic information about nanoparticles toxicology and research into how long these tiny particles persist in the body was urgently needed.
The consumer group Which? has called on the British Government to set up a task force to take immediate steps.
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