--Brominated Flour (which is ALL flour/bread you purchase unless it is
organic or labeled 'without bromine' or 'unbrominated' (see list/article below).
Although Bromine IS a carcinogen (as well as a health-destroyer for MANY
other reasons), it is NOT REQUIRED TO BE LABELED IN BREAD OR FLOUR
(except in California). This is because our wonderful FDA had
approved it as an ingredient before they passed the stricter labeling
laws and somehow or other it got 'grandfathered in'.
Bromine is found in:
--Beverages (citrus flavored, sodas, and juices in particular) that
contain brominated vegetable oil (Mountain Dew, Code Red Mountain Dew,
Dr. Pepper, Hi-C, SunDrop, Fanta, Minute Maid Lemonade, Citrus
Gatorade to name but a few)
--Swimming pools, whirlpools, hot tubs, etc. The typical disinfectant for pools
contains both chlorine AND bromine...and both of these DO seep into
the skin and push out the Iodine (as well as causing disease on their own) :(
--Non-organic produce (ESPECIALLY STRAWBERRIES!!). Did you know? They
spray the strawberry/produce fields with brominated pesticides in
California wearing hazmat suits. MANY migrant workers have been disabled/died because they're not warned or adequately protected.
--Pond/Farm raised Fish. Yep, they brominate the water to control
And all that, is all I know at this time...as I find more I'll
be sure to post.
Return to the Center for Science in the Public Interest
July 19, 1999
For more information:
food additives to Avoid
Consumer Group Calls for Ban On "Flour Improver"
Potassium Bromate Termed a Cancer Threat
WASHINGTON - The Center for Science in the Public Interest today
petitioned the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to prohibit the use
of potassium bromate, which is used to strengthen bread dough. CSPI
charged that the FDA has known for years that bromate causes cancers
in laboratory animals, but has failed to ban it.
Bromate was first found to cause tumors in rats in 1982. Subsequent
studies on rats and mice confirmed that it causes tumors of the
kidney, thyroid, and other organs. Instead of banning bromate, since
1991 the FDA — with only partial success — has urged bakers to
voluntarily stop using it.
"The FDA should fulfill its responsibility to protect the public's
health," said Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., executive director of CSPI.
"Instead of meeting privately with industry, the FDA should ban
"In 1992-93 and again in 1998-99, the FDA tested several dozen baked
goods and found that many contained bromate at levels considered
unsafe by the agency," said Darren Mitchell, a CSPI attorney. "One
sample tested recently had almost 1,000 times the detection limit. The
FDA's inaction needlessly exposes consumers to this harmful additive."
Food additives that cause cancer usually can be banned under the
Delaney clause of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. However, because
the FDA sanctioned the use of bromate before the Delaney clause went
into effect in 1958, it is harder for the agency to ban the substance.
Bromates have been banned in numerous countries, including the United
Kingdom in 1990 and Canada in 1994. In addition, in 1991, California
declared bromate a carcinogen under the state's Proposition 65. Baked
goods sold in California would have to bear a cancer warning if they
contained more than a certain level of bromate. As a result, most
California bakers have switched to bromate-free processes.
Many bakers, including Best Foods, Inc. (maker of Arnold, Entenmann's,
and Orowheat brand breads and rolls), Pepperidge Farm, and Pillsbury,
have switched to bromate-free processes. Also, some supermarket
chains, including Giant, Jewel, Ralph's, and Von's, do not use bromate.
In contrast, Interstate Brands Corp. (Wonder, Home Pride), Schmidt
Baking Co. (Schmidt, Sunbeam), Tasty Baking Co. (TastyKake), and
Martin's still use potassium bromate in some of their products. Among
fast-food chains, Burger King, Arby's, and Wendy's use bromate in
buns, and Boston Market uses it in its french sandwich bread.
CSPI advises consumers to avoid bread, rolls, doughnuts, and cakes
that list "potassium bromate" or "bromated flour" among their
ingredients. FDA's limited surveys found that rolls and buns are
especially likely to contain high levels of bromate.