§ Mr. Dalyell
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he is taking on the three reports he is studying on the effects of chlorine on food and drink.
§ Mr. Ryder
I assume that the question refers to the possible occurrence of dioxins in food as a result of migration from paper-based packaging materials made from wood pulp bleached with chlorine.
The data currently available indicate that the levels of dioxins in feed are extremely small and do not pose a hazard to health. However, as I indicated in an earlier answer to the hon. Member, my Department is presently carrying out a thorough investigation into this issue, including a programme of laboratory analysis. When the reports referred to are completed, we shall decide what further action is necessary.