REPORTS - ADVERSE FINDINGS RELATING TO FOOD IRRADIATION
The CCFAC referred to below, is the Codex Committee on Food Additives and
Contaminants. This is a committee
of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, a joint project of the World Health
Organization/Food & Agricultural Organization of the U.N.
Codex Alimentarius Commission sets the global Standards for food safety.
serious, adverse scientific findings documented below, the CCFAC met in The
Hague, March 12-16, 2001 and endorsed a proposal to remove the current dose
limit to which food can be irradiated internationally - 10 kiloGray, equivalent
to 330 million chest x-rays. This
proposed Draft Revision to the Codex General Standard for Irradiated Foods was
listed as Agenda Item 9a (CX/FAC 01/11).
International Consultative Group on Food Irradiation
(ICGFI), the organization that advises the CCFAC on global food irradiation policy, ignored its own 1994 recommendation
to study the potential toxicity of high dose irradiated food before deciding at its annual meeting in Geneva in November, 2000 to endorse the Proposed Draft Revision to the Codex General Standard for Irradiated Foods. (Review of Data on High Dose (10-70 kGy) Irradiation of Food. Report
of a Consultation Geneva: W.H.O., 1995)
recent in vitro study - funded in part by ICGFI and conducted at the prestigious Federal Research Centre for Nutrition in Karlsruhe, Germany - revealed that a chemical
formed in irradiated food that contains fat (such
as beef and chicken) is "clearly" cytotoxic* and
"clearly" genotoxic** to human and rat cells. The chemical, 2-dodecylcyclobutanone (or 2-DCB), has not been
found naturally in any food anywhere on earth.
(Delincee, H. and Pool-Zobel, B. "Genotoxic Properties of
2-dodecylcyclobutanone, a Compound Formed on Irradiation of Food Containing
Fat." Radiation Physics
and Chemistry, 52:39-42, 1998.)
For reasons yet to be explained the World Health
Organization mis-stated and dismissed the findings of this
study in its recent report
on high dose irradiated food. (High Dose Irradiation. Report
of a Joint FAO/IAEA/WHO Study Group. Geneva:
recent in vivo study - also funded in part by ICGFI and also conducted at the Federal Research Centre for Nutrition - found that 2-DCB caused "significant DNA damage" to rats
that ate the substance. Researchers
stated that these results "should provide impetus for further studies".
(Delincee, H. et al "Genotoxicity of
Irradiation: Fifth German Conference, Karlsruhe, November 11-13, 1998.)
For reasons that have yet to be explained, neither ICGFI nor
the W.H.O. have ever publicly commented on the findings of
serious questions raised by a W.H.O. researcher in 1969 regarding the potential toxicity, carcinogenicity and mutagenicity of irradiated food - a researcher who feared a thalidomide-type disaster - have yet to be sufficiently answered. (Schubert,
J. "Mutagenicity and Cytotoxicity of Irradiated
Foods and Food Components", Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 41:873-893, 1969.)
is powerless to kill the prion that causes 'mad cow disease'.
of Mark Worth, Senior Researcher, Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy &
Environmental Programme to: Public
Meeting Addressing the Codex Committee on Food Additives & Contaminants,
U.S. Department of Agriculture/U.S. Food and Drug Administration, February 13,
2001, Federal Office Building 8, Washington D.C.)
Dose Irradiation", WHO, 1999
also confirms that high dose irradiation destroys vitamins and other nutrients, often to
a significant degree.
the 'References Page' of this Website, is a sample only of additional, scientific research which
finds against assertions that irradiated food is safe and wholesome.
* Causes cellular damage
** Causes genetic damage
Worth's "Comments" can be read in full at Public Citizen's Critical
Mass Energy & Environmental Programme website under Food Irradiation: