Microwave popcorn hazardous to your health

June 25th, 2015

This article is more than 8 years old.

Fluoride-based substances used in packaging can find there way into the kernels, tests say

Tasty and dangerous (Photo: Bobby Eng)

Tests performed by the Danish consumer council, Forbrugerrådet Tænk, have revealed that microwave popcorn could be hazardous to your health.

The bag that every variety tested comes in is lined with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). This chemical is the same toxic  variety found in teflon pots and pans. It can stay in the environment and in the human body for long periods of time. This chemical when heated has been linked to infertility, cancer and other diseases in lab animals. No long term studies have been conducted on humans, but the EPA lists this substance as a carcinogen.

“Fluoride materials should be used only where they are absolutely vital, and not in food packaging and other consumer products,” researcher Xenia Trier from DTU food institute told TV2 News.

Still available in some stores
The grocery chain COOP pulled microwave popcorn from its shelves in May. Brugsen, Fakta and Irma no longer offer the product.

But Dansk Supermarked stores like Netto, Føtex and Bilka still carry microwave popcorn.

Dansk Supermarked spokesperson Mads Hvidtved Grand said he does not believe that Tænk’s test show how much of the chemical remains in the finished popcorn.

READ MORE: Coop pulls microwave popcorn from shelves

A 2010 study carried out by national food authority Fødevarestyrelsen claimed that (PFOA) is no transferred to the popcorn in any large amount.

“Dansk Supermarked always follows current laws and official regulations,” said Grand.

“We expect that authorities will change the limit and prohibit substances or products if they believe that there is a risk to consumer safety.”


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