Say it ain’t so! A new report claims that the world’s favorite hazelnut and chocolate spread, Nutella, may cause cancer! Find out all the details of this crazy new finding.
A new report from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) declares that one of the main ingredients of the wildly popular hazelnut spread Nutella may cause cancer. The ingredient, palm oil, was declared by the EFSA to be the most carcinogenic oils. It is used in Nutella to make the spread smooth and provides it with a considerably longer shelf life. Still, since the release of the insane report, Nutella’s sales have declined 3 percent and people are freaking.
The spread’s manufacturer Ferrero has responded to the allegations with a televised campaign, showing that the company does not use palm oil in a dangerous way. The commercial also insists that the favorite spread would not be the same without the token ingredient. “Making Nutella without palm oil would produce an inferior substitute for the real product, it would be a step backward,” Ferrero’s purchasing manager Vincenzo Tapella told Reuters. Additionally, palm oil is the cheapest oil on the market, and using a replacement would cost Ferrero millions more a year.
The EFSA report, which was released in May 2016, claims that palm oil is more dangerous than other vegetable oils when it is put under heat higher than 200 Celsius. The heat produces contaminants called glycidyl fatty acid ester, or GE. The GEs, when digested, can break down and release glycidol, which has been linked to causing tumors. Yikes.
Things are so not looking good for Nutella, although the manufacturers have said they do not expose the palm oil to heat higher than the 200 degree max. “The palm oil used by Ferrero is safe because it comes from freshly squeezed fruits and is processed at controlled temperatures,” Vincenzo Tapella says on the televised ad. “Furthermore, it is the best ingredient for giving Nutella the right smoothness, guaranteeing its special spreadability.”
While EFSA and the World Health Organization have flagged both GEs and palm oil as unhealthy substances, no official regulations have been put in place banning it from foods.
We hope that Nutella can find a healthy alternative so we can all go back to enjoying our favorite treat! HollywoodLifers, will you still eat Nutella if there is no change in the ingredients? Let us know!