Multiple US cereal giants have come under fire after traces of weedkiller were found in some of their products. Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the results that revealed that residual levels of weedkiller had been found in some well-known cereal brands.
PepsiCo’s Quaker Oats were one of the brands found to be contaminated. 1,300 parts per billion (ppb) of the chemical compound glyphosate, a key component in the chemical weedkiller Roundup, were found in the oat cereal. General Mills and Kelloggs were also among some of the brands contaminated.
The product with the highest recorded amounts of glyphosate was PepsiCo’s Quakers Old Fashioned Oats which showed a range of 390 ppb to 1,300 ppb across three test samples. Of the top ten most contaminated products, PepsiCo’s Quaker brand accounted for four spots. Eight of the products found to have traces of weedkiller were oats while two were granola brands.
America’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said in a statement that the agency accepted low traces of residual glyphosate. An acceptable amount of weedkiller in oat products is 30 parts per million, which means that the traces found by the EWG were within the normal range.
“Our products are safe and without question, they meet regulatory safety levels. The EPA has researched this issue and has set rules that we follow, as do farmers who grow crops including wheat and oats,” said a spokesperson for General Mills in a statement.
A spokesperson for Kellogg’s explained; “Our food is safe. Providing safe, high-quality foods is one of the ways we earn the trust of millions of people around the world. The EPA sets strict standards for safe levels of these agricultural residues and the ingredients we purchase from suppliers for our foods fall under these limits.”
The EWG has argued that by ingesting just 0.01 milligrams of glyphosate per day, consumers are exposed to a one-in-a-million chance of being diagnosed with cancer.