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Link found between palm oil and cancer cause concern


Over the years, there have been many allegations made about certain brands and companies that have created fears of unsafe foods. The latest in development? A possible link between Nutella and cancer.

Last week, people worldwide were given quite a scare after the news made headlines. Although the topic has come up before, scientists have recently found that an ingredient used in Nutella called palm oil can be linked to cancer. This oil is responsible for giving the chocolatey hazelnut spread its smooth texture. The ingredient itself is not cancerous. However, when palm oil is heated to temperatures above 392 degrees Fahrenheit (or 200 degrees Celsius), it generates GE (glycidyl fatty acid esters), which are carcinogenic contaminants.

Although it poses a possible health risk, the European Food Safety Authority has not yet called for a ban. Scientists are still unsure of the amount a person has to consume before it becomes a concern. To add to the developing topic, Nutella’s palm oil is heated under 392 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Ferrero Rocher, and uses low pressure to lessen the likeliness of contaminants forming. The reason such high temperatures are used at all is to burn off the palm oil’s natural coloring and neutralize the smell.

Bottom line: the research on the topic is still in its early stages, and thus it is too soon to determine whether or not the processed oil and product itself poses a significant health risk. Additionally, the EFSA report was released in May 2016, which was eight months ago. Some people question why the report is only just now stirring trouble if it was revealed so long ago.

To solve the issue, Ferrero Rocher, the company that creates Nutella, could substitute other oils to get the smooth texture, but this could change the taste of the product and prove to be expensive. According to Reuters, costs could rise by up to $22 million. As of right now, Nutella sales have not changed since the report was released, although if they wish to remain in the market and continue to be successful, these concerns have to be further addressed. The main question remains: Will consumers really stop buying Nutella if there is no considerate health concern? Students remain loyal yet wary to the possible effects.

“Nothing is proven yet; it’s still a theory,” senior Anne Arun said. “As long as they can’t directly pinpoint [the concern], I would still buy it.”

“I would probably continue eating Nutella right now based on the unsure scientific results,” senior Julia Reynaga said. “However, if later on in the future [the palm oil] is proven to reach a harmful temperature, then I would consider stopping.”

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Comments (4)

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  • A

    a true americanFeb 8, 2017 at 10:07 am

    Breaking News:

    Link found between MeteaMedia and cancer.

  • R

    RIP NUTELLAJan 24, 2017 at 10:22 am

    I’m currently going through Nutella withdrawal. My stomach hurts, my hands are incredibly shaky and, I’m hgaving truobn;le typeting. If I eat Nutella one more time, ill die but IT’S SO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD. Well i’ve got to go now. goodbye nutella nation, you will always be in our hearts coated with palm oil.

  • S

    stevenJan 18, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    Wow! No way!

  • N

    Nutella NationJan 18, 2017 at 11:43 am

    NO It is not possible!!! I love nutella too much for it to be banned!!! O JEEZ MY BRAIN IS GOING THROUGH HEMMORHAGES

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Link found between palm oil and cancer cause concern