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Best Before

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Best Before

Colourful, hygienic and nicely packaged: supermarket food is the same wherever you go in the world. But the packaging often contains dangerous toxins that can enter the food chain and pose serious health risks.

All over the world the same products are shipped into our supermarket chains. They are made to last as long as possible and look as eye catching as they can - presentation is everything. But food scientists are sounding the alarm bells. Packaging often contains dangerous toxins that can seep into the food it is meant to protect. Only a few of these toxins are known to us and only a few have been tested for their possible effects on human health. "I estimate that various types of packaging contain about 100,000 substances in a concentration that could well be relevant" says food chemist, Dr Konrad Grob. Despite hundreds of studies highlighting possible health risks such as hormonal imbalances and infertility, the EU has been unable to protect consumers. "It's a complicated issue. You've got lots of different national administrations, national legislations, different cultures", says Joe Hennon, a spokesperson for the European Commission for Environment. A ban on toxic substances and printing colours is overdue and it's not likely to happen any time soon.

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