DA questions ‘yoga mat’ chemical use in bread

YOU would not eat your yoga mat or flip-flops, yet some white bread contains the same chemical – azodicarbonamide (ADA) – used in the manufacture of these items.

The DA in the Eastern Cape wants to raise the issue of the continued use of this flour enhancer by one of South Africa’s biggest bakeries in parliament – although the only big bakery that does use ADA in South Africa is in the process of phasing it out.

ADA became known in the US as the “yoga mat” chemical used to make plastic and rubber shoes, flip-flops and yoga mats more pliable.

In bakeries it is added to flour or bread to make it whiter and softer and to improve shelf life.

DA provincial leader Athol Trollip said Sasko was the last of South Africa’s big bakeries to use it.

But Pioneer Foods, the company that owns Sasko, said the use of ADA would be phased out by July.

It is not necessary for bakeries to list azodicarbonamide as an ingredient because of the amount used.

ADA has been banned in Australia, the UK and some European countries.

The World Health Organisation has said there is evidence that it can induce asthma, other respiratory symptoms, and skin sensitisation.

“I have asked my colleague in the national parliament, Annette Steyn, to put questions to the ministers of agriculture and health regarding the permissibility of the use of ADA without disclosing its use,” Trollip said. – Herald Reporter

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