Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Benzene in Soda (2)

A friendly reader points out that the "benzene in soda" controversy isn't just about soda.
You mention sodas, and quote the guy saying something about "parents need to know what's in their children's drinks." But the first time I heard of this issue, I thought "well my kids and I almost never drink soda, so why should I care?" Imagine my surprise when I read a longer list of beverages, and saw that it included many "juice drinks" - thinks like Kool-aid Jammers, Hi-C Blasts, etc. These aren't drinks that I buy very often either, but many other parents are bringing them to soccer games for the post-game beverage.

My suggestion: write another post that elaborates on this - it's not just soda, it seems to be any beverage that includes ascorbic acid (to make claims about Vitamin C) and a benzoate (preservative).
As requested, here is the full list of products flagged by the Environmental Working Group. These products contain the two components which, in combination, raise the possibility of forming benzene.
On February 24 and February 27, 2006, EWG purchased the following drinks at four major retail outlets in Washington, DC. They all contained ascorbic acid and either sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate--the ingredients that the FDA and the beverage industry have said can mix together to form benzene, a known human carcinogen. The actual levels of benzene formed in these products may be at trace levels and well within legal limits for drinking water.

* Country Time Lemonade
* Crystal Light Sunrise Classic Orange
* Diet Pepsi Twist
* Diet Pepsi Vanilla
* Diet RockStar Energy Drink
* Fanta Orange
* Fanta Pineapple
* Fruit20 Plus 10 Natural Apple
* Giant Fruity Punch Cooler
* Hawaiian Punch Fruit Juicy Red
* Hawaiian Punch Lemonade
* Hi-C Blast, Orange Supernova
* Kool-Aid Jammers Blue-Raspberry
* Kool-Aid Jammers Cherry
* Kool-Aid Jammers Grape
* Kool-Aid Jammers Orange
* Lo-Carb Monster Energy
* Monster Energy
* Pepsi Twist Lemon
* RockStar Energy Drink
* Sierra Mist
* Sunkist
* Sunny D
* Sunny D Baja
* Sunny D Intense Sport Cool Punch
* Sunny D Orange-Fused Strawberry
* Sunny D Smooth
* Sunny D Smooth + Calcium
* Tampico Citrus Punch
* Tampico Grape Punch
* Tampico Tropical Punch
* Tropicana Twister Diet Soda (Diet Orange)
* Tropicana Twister Soda Grape
* Tropicana Twister Soda Orange
* Tropicana Twister Soda Strawberry