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Ethoxyquin: In Pesticides, Pet Foods And Processed Food Products!

Published on Tuesday, 08 October 2013 18:18

If you Google Ethoxyquin, you’ll find the search results mostly devoted to the ingredient’s usage in pet foods … and how it isn’t good for our pets.  You’ll actually have to dig a little deeper to find the information you need for its inclusion in the human food supply.  That’s because it isn’t one of the more common additives.

Ethoxyquin is a synthetic antioxidant added foods as a means to preserve color.  This is the function that the ingredient was approved for by the FDA.    And according to the FDA, it cannot exceed levels past 100 ppm (parts per million). Ethoxyquin is a yellow liquid that is insoluble in water, but soluble in organic solvents.  Some studies have shown ethoxyquin to be effective in crawfish meal and fish oils as an antioxidant. It works especially well in conjunction with lecithin when preserving oils or fats. It will also inhibit, in bacon, nitrosamine formation at very low levels. These are currently not approved uses in the United States per the Code of Federal Regulations.

You will currently find the ingredient mainly in processed foods that include paprika, chili powder, chili sauce, and taco seasoning.  Ehtoxyquin is a common ingredient in pet foods and animal feed.  There has been controversy on the usage of this in pet food due to related health issues including thyroid and kidney problems, reproductive problems, and cancer. Due to these findings, the FDA lowered the level permitted in pet food to 75 ppm.

Ethoxyquin acts as an anti-scalding agent in pesticides.  It is used on pears to preven brown spots. The amount of residual ethoxyquin allowed per FDA on pears is not to exceed 3 ppm.

Studies have linked ethoxyquin to kidney damage in rats.  It is an irritant and can cause dermatitis when handled.  Eye irritation is also common when working with the chemical.

Ethoxyquin was originally developed in the 1950s by Monsanto and was introduced as a pesticide in 1965 for use on apples and pears.  It is banned in most countries (Italy, Spain, Germany and Greece to name a few) as a food additive. In the United Kingdom and France, the  use of Ethoxyquin is permitted in pesticides only and cannot be included in food products of any kind.

Visit The Rak Foundation for Nutritional Awareness for more information on how we can change the way America eats!