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Schumer pushes for food chemical ban

February 12, 2014

NEW YORK, NY — U.S. Sen. Charles E. Schumer on February 11 announced a major push to ban a chemical commonly found in fast-food bread products, and suspected to be a carcinogen, from all food products nationwide. Schumer is undertaking this push in light of the Subway Sandwich chain’s decision this week to remove the chemical, azodicarbonamide, from its bread.

The chemical, which is banned from use in food in many countries of the European Union and Australia, is used primarily to make rubbery products such as the soles of shoes and yoga mats. Schumer warned that, even though Subway has discontinued its use of this dangerous chemical, many popular fast-food chains including McDonald’s and Arby’s still use the toxic additive in their bread. As a result, Schumer is calling on the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban azodicarbonamide from being used in food nationwide.

“Many countries in the developed world have banned this toxic chemical from food products, and it’s time for the U.S. to follow suit,” said Schumer. “While Subway should be commended for removing it voluntarily, it shouldn’t have even been a choice in the first place. The FDA needs to take another look at this chemical and make sure that the thing that makes our rubber rubbery is not also making our food carcinogenic.”