California May Ban Skittles, Sour Patch Kids, Pez & Jelly Beans Due to Cancer Causing Additives
Edited by: TJVNews.com
Seems like diving into the candy drawer may not be an option for confectionary aficionados in California. Recently, the New York Post reported that a California lawmaker is proposing a ban on additives used in several candies — including Skittles, Sour Patch Kids, Pez and jelly beans — as they are linked to cancer and organ damage and can be harmful to DNA. The Daily Mail of the UK first reported on this.
Additionally, Trident sugar-free gum is at risk of being pulled from the shelves along with more savory items like Campbell’s soup and some bread brands.
“Californians shouldn’t have to worry that the food they buy in their neighborhood grocery store might be full of dangerous additives or toxic chemicals,” reads a statement from Assembly Member Jesse Gabriel, whose district is outside of Los Angeles and who proposed the ban in a bill, according to the Post report.
The Daily Mail of the UK reported that directors from companies including the National Confectioners Association, California Grocers Association and the American Chemistry Council added that the bill jumps the gun because the additives’ safety is already being reviewed through a number of existing measures.
Of the five additives that would be included in the ban, three — brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate and titanium dioxide are banned in the EU. One, the dye Red 3, is banned from use in cosmetic products in America, the Daily Mail of the UK reported.
Not only would this law prevent their sale, but also would ban food products from being manufactured with those ingredients throughout the Golden State, the Post reported.
“This bill will correct for a concerning lack of federal oversight and help protect our kids, public health, and the safety of our food supply,” Gabriel added. Speaking to the Daily Mail of the UK, Gabriel added that, “The idea here is for companies to change their recipes.” He added that he speculates a uniform recipe change for the snacks in question rather than Cali-custom batches, the Post reported.
Last year, Skittles’ maker, Mars, was sued by a consumer over the use of titanium dioxide — a color-enhancing ingredient, according to the Post reported. Although the suit was tossed, experts have found concerns from the dioxide.
In 2015, research published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature concluded that titanium dioxide has the potential to accumulate in a person’s bloodstream, liver, spleen and kidneys. The Post also reported that as for red dye 3, 2012 research links the ingredient to DNA-damaging genotoxicity, and in 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency reported that children who consumed the dye were more likely to be hyperactive and inattentive.
The Mail reported that brominated vegetable oil was also removed from Mountain Dew by parent company Pepsi in 2020.
The letter, written in opposition to the bill, stated: ‘All five of these additives have been thoroughly reviewed by the federal and state systems and many international scientific bodies and continue to be deemed safe,’ according to the report in the UK Daily Mail.
It added that a petition for the removal of the dye Red 3 was submitted in November last year and is open for comment until next month. Furthermore, non-profit consumer advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest petitioned California’s Department of Public Health in 2022 demanding a warning label on foods containing synthetic dyes, the Daily Mail of the UK reported. A hearing for the petition is planned for April 11, 2023.
A separate letter, penned solely by the National Confectioners Association, highlighted that the confectionery industry supports more than 100,000 good-paying jobs in California, the Daily Mail reported. It said: ‘As the makers of chocolate, candy, gum and mints, the confectionery industry… we create good-paying jobs in the manufacturing sector and support thousands of additional American jobs throughout the economy. In California, the confectionary industry represents a $7.7 billion economic output, pays $1.8 billion in wages, and supports 106,351 total jobs in the state.’
The letter concluded saying ‘there is no evidence to support banning the listed ingredients in the bill’.
The EU, along with Canada and Brazil, banned potassium bromate because of links to thyroid and kidney cancers.