Germany to cook chips at lower temperature due to cancer fears

January 27, 2003 in Food Companies, Manufacturing and Trends, Food Safety, Nutrition Topics in the News

Germany to cook chips at lower temperature due to cancer fears

German food makers have agreed to recommend that chips be cooked at lower temperatures to reduce the build up of a possible cancer-causing compound, acrylamide, the consumer affairs ministry said last week.

Germany launched an inquiry last year to find out how to minimize acrylamide levels in response to a Swedish study which found the compound formed in foods that were fried or baked at high temperatures. The Swedish research triggered a worldwide health scare. Acrylamide has been designated for years as a possible cancer-causing agent.

In the future, packaging in Germany will recommend that potato chips are deep fried at 175 degrees Celsius (347 degrees Fahrenheit) or baked in fan ovens at 180-190C, the ministry said.

Acrylamide has been shown to lead to a higher incidence of cancer in rats, although two studies of factory workers exposed to the compound found no evidence of increased risk, according to a 2002 report from EU scientists.

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