Our food regulator Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has misrepresented the findings of two independent reports it commissioned on the safety of nanomaterials in food and food packaging. The reports were supposed to have been completed by June 2015 but were never released. On 27th May 2016 Friends of the Earth submitted an FOI request to FSANZ for these reports and associated documents. Six days after the request was filed FSANZ released the reports – claiming that the reports concluded “none of the nanotechnologies described are of health concern.” This as a deliberate misrepresentation of the reports. In fact, the reports draw attention to the major data gaps regarding the safety of nanoparticles in food and food packaging and raise concerns regarding the potential toxicity of nano-silica, titanium dioxide and silver.
Wednesday, 18th May 2016Independent testing commissioned by Friends of the Earth US has found risky nanoparticles deemed unsafe for use in toothpaste in baby formula. Six samples of baby formula made by Gerber®, Enfamil®, Similac® and Well Beginnings™ - which are all available online in Australia - were tested. Four of the samples contained nanoparticles of hydroxyapatite. Furthermore, 100 per cent of the hydroxyapatite particles in the samples were nano - demonstrating conclusively that they were intentionally produced (1).The European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) concluded that the needle-like form of nano-hydroxyapatite found in Gerber® Good Start Gentle®, Well Beginnings™ Advantage®, and Enfamil® formulas, which is similar in shape to asbestos, is potentially toxic and should not be used in toothpastes, tooth whiteners and mouth washes.
The GM–Free Australia Alliance has joined FoE Australia as an affiliate member. Welcome aboard! For a full list of our affiliates, please check here. The GM–Free Australia Alliance Inc is an independent not-for-profit alliance of groups and individuals sharing common concerns about the threat of Genetic Manipulation (GM) of food and crops in Australia. Visit our website : www.gmfreeaustralia.org.auFacebook : https://www.facebook.com/gmfreezeoz/
A new Friends of the Earth report reveals that our regulators are planning to allow foods derived from a range of new genetic modification (GM) techniques untested and unlabelled onto our supermarket shelves and that they have misled the Senate on the issue. Take action – tell Fiona Nash to rein in the regulators Large agrochemical companies such as Dow, Syngenta, Bayer and Monsanto have been investing in a suite of risky new GM techniques and arguing that they are not really GM in order to attempt to circumvent regulation and public resistance to GMOs.
Friends of the Earth is concerned that the Government’s moves to delete the definitions of gene technology, GMO (genetically modified organism) and GM product from the Food Standards Act are an attempt to deregulate risky new genetic engineering techniques by stealth. Furthermore, it appears that the Government has not discussed these proposed changes with either the state governments or the New Zealand Government. The Food Standards Australia New Zealand Amendment Bill 2015 is scheduled for debate in the House today and Senate tomorrow.
Friends of the Earth has renewed its calls for a recall of food products containing nanomaterials following the release of a new studyi which found that titanium dioxide (TiO2) in food is absorbed into the human bloodstream. The calls follow the release of independent testing results last week which found potentially harmful nanoparticles of titanium TiO2 and silica (SiO2) in a range of food products including M&Ms, Nestlé Coffee Mate Creamer, Old El Paso Taco Mix and Woolworths Homebrand White Sauce.