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Let us eat cake

News this week is that France, which for quite some time has had a bee in its bonnet about the use of additives in processed food, has adopted a bill suspending the use of titanium dioxide as a food colouring. As a result, for the time being it cannot be marketed nor can products containing the ingredient be sold.

It’s not yet clear how the EU will respond to a country taking such a unilateral stance but it’s clearly the thin end of the wedge. A recent French parliamentary report also called for a number of other measures to make processed foods and ‘ultra processed’ foods healthier, which means imposing limits on sugar, salt and fat, and slashing the number of additives permitted in individual food and drink products.

I’m watching developments with great interest, along with the rest of the food manufacturing industry no doubt.

But I always like to bring you good news too. And this week, I invite cake-lovers to rejoice. That’s because sodium aluminium phosphate, which has been under the EFSA spotlight for some time, has finally been re-evaluated and given a clean bill of health,

For those of you scratching your heads, that’s the ingredient that gives Battenberg cake its pink colouring. A negative EFSA opinion would have signalled the end of the classic sponge, which originated in the UK many moons ago. Who knew?

Cue huge sighs of relief all round.

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