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Shvoong Home>Society & News>News Items>Times of India Summary

Times of India

Article Summary   by:sreeram    
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California may soon have warning on chips packs


Potato chips and French fries could soon come with a warning label in California if the state top attorney prevails in a lawsuit filed against nine fast food chains and snack –food makers .Attorney General Bill Locky asked on Friday for court order requiring Mc Donald Burger King Wendy Frito Lays and other companies to warn consumers that their fries and chips may contain acrylamide, a chemical the state says causes cancer.

At least one of the companies disputes that saying there no evidence the substances is carcinogenic ,In taking this action Iam not telling people to stop eating potato chips or French fries .Lockyer said that from his personal experience that while these snacks may not be a necessary part of a healthy diet, they sure taste good.

Acrylamide ,a byproduct of chemicals and high heat ,has been found at low levels in several foods.The lawsuit focuses on French fries and chips because they have more acrylamide than other foods, according to the Attorney General Office.

Frito-Lay spokeswoman Lynn Markley said there was no scientific evidence that arcylamide causes cancer. She said it was counterproductive for the state to sue the companies when California regulators are setting standards for the chemical under Proposition 65,a state law that requires companies to notify the public about potentially dangerous toxins in food.

When risk levels for acrylamide were added to Proposition 65 in 1990,the chemical was generally thought of as an industrial agent,used in food packaging and to treat sewage,according to the US department of Health and Human Services. But in 2002 A Swedish National Food Authority study reported that acrylamide occurred naturally in some starch-rich foods as a result of cooking or heat processing ,Other studies have found no link between foods containing acrylamide and higher risk of cancer. The US Food and Drug Administration is assessing the chemical in food.

Representatives of other companies named in the law suit did not return calls for comment on Friday.







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Published: September 17, 2005   
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