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Cancer Causing Chemicals in Popular Indian Spice Brands: Know Findings & Brands!

cancer causing agents in indian spice brands. Know these brands.

In an unsettling revelation, recent tests by food safety authorities in Hong Kong and Singapore have detected dangerous levels of a cancer-causing chemical, ethylene oxide, in several popular Indian spice brands. This alarming discovery has prompted urgent recalls and raised serious questions about the safety of these common kitchen staples. As consumers grapple with the implications, we delve into the details of the report and what it means for your health and culinary practices.

How will the discovery of cancer-causing chemicals in popular Indian spices affect your buying decisions?

The Discovery and Immediate Response:
The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) in Hong Kong, as part of its routine food surveillance program, tested spice products available in local markets. The findings were concerning: spices from major Indian brands, MDH and Everest, contained ethylene oxide levels above the permissible limits. This chemical, primarily used to sterilize food products, is classified as a ‘Group 1 carcinogen’ by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, meaning it has a proven link to cancer.

Legal and Health Implications:
Under both Hong Kong and Singapore’s food safety laws, selling food containing unsafe levels of pesticide residues can lead to significant fines and even imprisonment. The exposure to ethylene oxide is not considered immediately dangerous at low levels, but prolonged consumption can increase cancer risks, highlighting the need for stringent regulatory oversight and better safety protocols in spice production.

Consumer Concerns and Market Impact:
This scandal could significantly shake consumer confidence not only in the affected brands but also in the oversight of food safety practices. As investigations continue and further tests are conducted, the spice market may see a shift towards more rigorously tested and transparently sourced products.

Brands and Products Affected:
The products in question include MDH’s Madras Curry Powder, Sambhar Masala, and Curry Powder, as well as Everest’s Fish Curry Masala. The tests conducted by the CFS led to immediate actions, instructing retailers to halt sales and remove these products from shelves, a move mirrored by the Singapore Food Agency (SFA), which also initiated recalls.

The discovery of carcinogenic chemicals in widely-used spice products poses a significant public health concern and underscores the critical need for comprehensive food safety measures. As authorities work to address these risks, consumers are left to reconsider the safety of their food choices. The ongoing situation will likely serve as a catalyst for change in the industry, prompting both increased regulation and a move towards safer, more sustainable practices in spice production.

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