It’s Time to Ban Toxic Flavorings from Processed Foods

By Catherine J. Frompovich

Kudos are due Center for Science in the Public Interest, Natural Resources Defense Council, Center for Food Safety, Consumers Union, Improving Kids’ Environment, Center for Environmental Health, Environmental Working Group, and James Huff for the 38-page petition they filed June 10, 2015 with the Director of the Office of Food Additive Safety at the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition regarding the removal of seven synthetic flavors and one additional flavor from the U.S. food production/processing/manufacturing processes.

The flavors involved are:

  1. Benzophenone (also known as diphenylketone);
  2. Ethyl acrylate;
  3. Eugenyl methyl ether (also known as 4-allylveratrole or methyl eugenol);
  4. Myrcene (also known as 7-methyl-3-methylene-1,6-octadiene);
  5. Pulegone (also known as p-menth-4(8)-en-3-one);
  6. Pyridine;
  7. Styrene; and
  8. Trans,trans-2,4-hexadienal.

that previously had been approved as GRAS (generally regarded as safe), but recently have been regarded as not safe under the Delaney Clause guidelines and as being probable carcinogens.

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Benzophenone is in ink used in food packaging [1] that can, and apparently does, migrate into foods.

Ethyl acrylate is a chemical used in manufacturing food packages [2] that can come in contact with food and migrate into it.

Eugenyl methyl ether is a synthetic flavoring that resembles flavors in 12 plant foods [3].

Myrcene is a synthetic chemical that is used as hops flavoring in beer making [4] and also to resemble flavors in 7 plant foods [5].

Pulegone [7] is a synthetic flavoring that can be used in chewing gum and scotch making that resembles the flavors of several mints [8].

Pyridine is a synthetic flavoring related to benzene that can be used as coffee flavoring and also has a corn-like taste.

Styrene is a chemical in Styrofoam plastic food containers, which can migrate into food in a relatively short period of time [9].

Trans,trans-2,4-hexadienal is a synthetic flavoring that has a fresh, green, citrus floral odor [10] and can be used in many food preparations.

The petitioners point out that

Rather, as the legislative history amply demonstrates,23 Congress intended most new and potentially dangerous substances to receive more exacting review by FDA under the food additive petition process. Carcinogenic substances, as specifically highlighted by the Delaney Clause, certainly belong in such a category. Thus, any likely carcinogens must necessarily be assessed as food additives, subject to the Delaney Clause, even if they were once considered GRAS.24

23 For an in-depth discussion of the legislative history of the Food Additive Amendment of 1958, see Comment by Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), Consumers Union, Environmental Working Group (EWG), and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) re: Substances Generally Recognized as Safe, available at

24 Moreover, if Delaney did not apply to GRAS, any independent GRAS determinations by manufacturers of likely carcinogens would be plainly insufficient to support a “general recognition of safety,” as neither FDA nor the food industry currently collects or reports on the cumulative effects information necessary to address the safety of any condition of use.

Page 9 of the petition lists a chart with the above flavors and how they are used in food manufacturing, basically sweet treats!

Page 18 starts the listing of authorities who are recognized for their ability and responsibility for determining if a chemical is capable of causing cancer in man or animals.

Hopefully, the Office of Food Additive Safety will appreciate this petition and act accordingly with the request, which is to remove them from the GRAS list and ban them from food production and packaging.




Flavor Ingredients / Food grade essential oils, aroma chemicals, oleoresins, and botanical extracts utilized in the manufacture of finished flavors.

50 Jawdroppingly Toxic Food Ingredients & Artificial Additives to Avoid

Chemical Cuisine / Learn About Food Additives from the CSPI

Top 20 Food Additives to Avoid

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CONFIRMED! Lab tests show over 30+ popular food products contains GMOs. Are you eating them?


Catherine J Frompovich (website) is a retired natural nutritionist who earned advanced degrees in Nutrition and Holistic Health Sciences, Certification in Orthomolecular Theory and Practice plus Paralegal Studies. Her work has been published in national and airline magazines since the early 1980s. Catherine authored numerous books on health issues along with co-authoring papers and monographs with physicians, nurses, and holistic healthcare professionals. She has been a consumer healthcare researcher 35 years and counting.

Catherine’s latest book, published October 4, 2013, is Vaccination Voodoo, What YOU Don’t Know About Vaccines, available on

Her 2012 book A Cancer Answer, Holistic BREAST Cancer Management, A Guide to Effective & Non-Toxic Treatments, is available on and as a Kindle eBook.

Two of Catherine’s more recent books on are Our Chemical Lives And The Hijacking Of Our DNA, A Probe Into What’s Probably Making Us Sick (2009) and Lord, How Can I Make It Through Grieving My Loss, An Inspirational Guide Through the Grieving Process (2008)

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