The government on Monday banned the use of potassium bromate as a food additive following a Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) study that found its presence in bread caused cancer.
“FSSAI [Food Safety Standards Authority of India] has banned potassium bromate,” said its CEO Pawan Kumar Agarwal. “A notification has been issued in this regard. As far as potassium iodate is concerned, it has been referred to a scientific panel.”
Potassium iodate is also used as a food additive and it too is said to be carcinogenic.
A CSE study had found that 84 per cent of 38 commonly available brands of pre-packaged breads, including pav and buns, tested positive for potassium bromate and potassium iodate. The two food additives are banned in many countries and are listed as “hazardous” to public health. According to CSE, potassium bromate typically increases dough strength, leads to higher rising and gives uniform finish to baked products. Potassium iodate is a flour treatment agent. — PTI