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FDA bans additive found in many citrusy drinks

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The FDA is revoking a regulation that allowed for a certain additive to be used in food items because it is no longer safe. Brominated vegetable oil, or BVO, is used in dozens of products, mostly sodas.

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BVO is vegetable oil modified with the chemical bromine to keep citrus flavoring from floating to the top in drinks. Bromine is the chemical found in fire suppressants. After conducting some studies with the National Institutes of Health, the FDA found BVO could be potentially harmful to humans.

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One FDA study in 2022 found BVO can accumulate in the body, leading to nervous system damage, headaches, skin irritation and loss of muscle coordination and memory.

The FDA removed BVO from the “Generally Recognized as Safe” (GRAS) list in 1970. BVO use has been regulated since then, but this new rule will ban its use completely.

The rule will take effect on Aug. 2, but companies will have up to one year after that to tweak their formulas, relabel products and deplete their current BVO stock.

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[KARAH RUCKER]

THE F-D-A IS REVOKING A REGULATION THAT ALLOWED FOR A CERTAIN ADDITIVE TO BE USED IN FOOD ITEMS – SAYING IT’S NO LONGER SAFE.

BROMINATED VEGETABLE OIL – OR B-V-O – IS USED IN DOZENS OF PRODUCTS – MOSTLY SODAS.

IT’S VEGETABLE OIL THAT’S MODIFIED WITH THE CHEMICAL BROMINE – WHICH IS FOUND IN FIRE RETARDANTS – TO KEEP CITRUS FLAVORING FROM FLOATING TO THE TOP IN DRINKS.

AFTER CONDUCTING SOME STUDIES WITH THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH – THE F-D-A FOUND B-V-O COULD BE POTENTIALLY HARMFUL TO HUMANS.

ONE F-D-A STUDY IN 20-22 FOUND B-V-O CAN ACCUMULATE IN THE BODY – LEADING TO NERVOUS SYSTEM DAMAGE, HEADACHES, SKIN IRRITATION, AND LOSS OF MUSCLE COORDINATION AND MEMORY.

B-V-O WAS REMOVED FROM THE F-D-A’S “GENERALLY RECOGNIZED AS SAFE” LIST IN 19-70… AND ITS USE HAS BEEN REGULATED SINCE THEN – BUT THIS NEW RULE WILL BAN ITS USE COMPLETELY.

THE RULE IS SET TO TAKE EFFECT ON AUGUST 2-ND – BUT COMPANIES WILL HAVE UP TO ONE YEAR AFTER THAT TO TWEAK THEIR FORMULAS, RE-LABEL PRODUCTS, AND DEPLETE THEIR CURRENT B-V-O STOCK.