HC Deb 27 March 2003 vol 402 c387W
Mr. Greg Knight

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what representations he has received and what research he has evaluated on the impact on human health caused by the presence of acrylamide in certain cooked foods; what action he proposes to take as a result; and if he will make a statement. [104562]

Ms Blears

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has received several representations following reports that acrylamide had been found to occur in a wide range of home-cooked and processed foods.

Research on the formation of acrylamide in certain cooked foods and its possible impact on human health is still at an early stage. Acrylamide has been shown to cause various types of cancer in laboratory animals. It is considered to have the potential to cause cancer in humans, but a link has not been proven.

The FSA considers that exposure to acrylamide should be kept as low as reasonably practicable and is commissioning research and surveillance that aims to assist in minimising the amounts occurring in food. Meanwhile, 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.