Benzene found in some soft drinks, FDA says

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, May 20, 2006.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Government testing found the cancer-causing chemical benzene in some soft drinks but not at high enough levels to cause harm, U.S. regulators said on Friday.

    Five out of more than 100 beverages tested had benzene in amounts exceeding the limit set for U.S. drinking water - 5 parts per billion, the Food and Drug Administration said.

    The agency said it asked manufacturers to minimize or eliminate benzene levels in their products. All of the makers contacted have reformulated the drinks or are in the process of doing so, FDA officials said.

    The agency tested samples of soft drinks and other beverages from November 2005 through April 2006.

    The benzene amounts detected "do not pose a safety concern for consumers," the FDA said in a statement.

    Most products had very low levels of benzene or none that was detected, said Dr. Laura Tarantino, director of the FDA's Office of Food Additive Safety.

    Some levels were as high as 88 parts per billion, according to data posted on the FDA Web site. There is no limit set for soft drinks but regulators believe benzene levels should be minimal, Tarantino said.

    "Any benzene in soft drinks that can be avoided by the way you formulate or package or distribute should be avoided. That's what we're really asking," she said.

    The drinks with benzene exceeding five parts per billion were certain lots of Safeway Inc.'s Safeway Select Diet Orange; Cadbury Schweppes Plc's Crush Pineapple; Giant Light Cranberry Juice Cocktail, sold by Ahold unit Giant Food Inc.; Meridian Beverage Co.'s AquaCal Strawberry Flavored Water Beverage, and Kraft Food Inc.'s Crystal Light Sunrise Classic Orange.

    Safeway reformulated its Select Diet Orange soda before it was contacted by the FDA, company spokeswoman Teena Massingill said. Representatives of the other makers could not immediately be reached on Friday evening.

    Benzene can form in soft drinks that contain vitamin C and chemicals called benzoate salts when they are exposed to light or high temperatures, the FDA said.

    The American Beverage Association said the FDA's findings were consistent with past reviews of benzene in soft drinks.

    "Once again the FDA has reviewed the presence of benzene and found no public health concern," spokesman Kevin Keane said.

    The organization has issued guidelines to manufacturers on ways to minimize benzene.
  2. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Trust us the levels of benzene is of no concern :rolleyes:
  3. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Yeah and You see how much Hardcore Soda drinkers are going through in a day?
    I know a few that are over 12 a day Diet Coke drinkers. That can't be good at all.

    So the 'safe' levels of a Carcinigen are prolly based around 3 beverages a week?
  4. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Benzene isn't all they should be worried about if they're drinking 12 cans of Diet Coke a day, can't stand the diet drinks myself taste like crap.
  5. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    I have one can of pepsi a day, my only vice .
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