Fast Food Packaging Material
There have been reports about the harms of eating fast foods. These foods have certain ingredients that are used to make the food cook fast, thereby affecting our health. Now the buzz is that fast food packaging materials also contain chemicals that have been associated with cancer and other health issues.
This has been warned by some scientist through a new study that they conducted tested more than 400 samples of wrapping papers.
Researchers, including those from the University of Notre Dame in the US, tested over 400 samples of packaging materials, including hamburger and sandwich wrappers, pastry bags, beverage cups and French fry containers.
They found evidence of fluorinated compounds called per- and poly fluoroalkyl substances (PFASs).
‘This is a really persistent chemical. It gets into the bloodstream, it stays there and accumulates. There are diseases that correlate to it. So we really do not want this class of chemicals out there,’ said Graham Peaslee, the professor at the University of Notre Dame.
Particle-Induced Gamma-Ray Emission
Peaslee used a novel specialised method called particle-induced gamma-ray emission (PIGE) spectroscopy, which he developed to analyse the total fluorine content of each piece of packaging.
Samples were collected from a total of 27 fast food restaurant chains in and around Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington and Michigan.
The study did not include takeout containers, such as Chinese food boxes or pizza boxes. Upon the results of the study, researchers reached out to each of the fast food chains that had been sampled to see if they were aware the packaging being used contained fluorinated chemicals.
Only two responded, each stating they believed their packaging was free of PFASs. However, the study showed both respondents had tested positive for a substantial amount of fluorinated chemicals, leading researchers to believe that some chains may be unaware of what is in their packaging.