The Food Safety Standards Authority of India has banned potassium bromate in food, reported PTI. The restriction on the use of the food additive was imposed on Monday after a study by the Centre for Science and Environment found the presence of potassium bromate and potassium iodate in 84% of the 38 brands of breads commonly bought by people. Both chemicals are believed to be carcinogenic, which means they increase the risk of cancer in consumers.
“A notification has been issued in this regard. As far as potassium iodate is concerned, it has been referred to a scientific panel,” said Pawan Kumar Agarwal, CEO of the government agency. Potassium bromate is used to strengthen the dough, help it rise high thus evening out the final product. Potassium iodate is generally used as for flour treatment. Several countries have termed both chemicals hazardous and banned its use.