HC Deb 12 March 2003 vol 401 cc337-8W
Dr. Gibson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research the Government is carrying out on the link between acrylamide and(a) bowel, (b) bladder and (c) kidney cancer. [101385]

Ms Blears

Acrylamide has been found to occur in a wide range of home-cooked and processed foods, including chips and crisps. It has not been found in uncooked or boiled foods, and appears to be formed during cooking by methods such as frying and baking.

Acrylamide has been shown to cause various types of cancer in laboratory animals, although not of the bowel, bladder and kidney. It is considered to have the potential to cause cancer in humans, but a link has not been proven.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) considers that exposure to acrylamide should be kept as low as reasonably practicable and is commissioning research and surveillance that will minimise the amounts occurring in food. Meanwhile the FSA advice remains that on the basis of current evidence people should eat a balanced diet including a variety of fruit and vegetables, and that as part of a balanced diet people should moderate their consumption of fried and fatty foods.

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