Lead found in juice, isn’t the only child beverage problem you have to worry about. Now there’s arsenic to contend with as well. On Thursday, consumer advocacy organizations Empire State Consumer Project and Food & Water Watch (F&WW) called on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to take action regarding the issue of arsenic-contaminated apple juice – in particular Mott’s apple juice. A letter sent to the FDA, from the groups, contained new and highly concerning data from testing commissioned by the Empire State Consumer Project. Various brands of apple juice and apple sauce were tested and unfortunately one sample of Mott’s Apple Juice registered 55 parts per billion of arsenic. To put this into perspective, 55 parts per billion is more than five times the level of arsenic that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) allows in drinking water.
“This is not the first time high levels of arsenic have been found in apple juice,” said Judy Braiman, Executive Director of the Empire State Consumer Project. “It is past time for the FDA to set a limit on a toxic substance like arsenic with long term health effects in the juice that kids drink.” According to F&WW two-thirds of apple juice consumed here in the U.S. comes from China, which is part of the problem. Arsenic-based pesticides aren’t used in the U.S. but are still being used in Chinese orchards. Additionally, as Food Safety News points out, less than 2% of imported food is actually inspected by FDA. Until the FDA gets on the ball, your best bet is to choose juice that comes from a local, organic juice company.
Lead image ©topfer via sxc.