MEPs order phosphate-free kebabs

EPA/CHRISTIAN CHARISIUS

A restaurant employee stands next to the kebab machine in a snack shop in Hamburg, Germany.

MEPs order phosphate-free kebabs


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The European Parliament’s Health Committee MEPs on November 27 sounded the alarm about the use of phosphates in kebabs.  They objected to a Commission proposal to allow the use of phosphoric acid, di and tri phosphates and polyphosphates (E 338-452) in kebab meat (mutton, lamb, veal, beef or poultry).

The European Commission will be forced to scrap its proposal if a majority in the European Parliament decides to block it. The vote will be held during the December 11-14 plenary session in Strasbourg.

EU rules do not generally permit the use of phosphate additives in meat preparations. But due to an accumulation of exceptions, they are increasingly being used in them, to protect flavour and retain water.

Health Committee MEPs pointed to a 2012 scientific review showed a potential link between phosphate additives in food with increased cardiovascular risk.

The European Food Safety Authority, however, does not think it is possible to attribute this risk to phosphorus intake in general or phosphate additives.

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