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Meat Products: Nitrates

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN HL2160, tabled on 5 September 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the use of nitrates in the preservation of processed meats.

Answered on

3 October 2022

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) considers that nitrates and nitrites are important preservatives which protect consumers by hindering the growth of harmful organisms, such as Clostridium botulinum, which is responsible for botulism.

This is supported by the independent scientific committees which advise the FSA and other organisations such as the European Food Safety Authority, which have previously reviewed the effectiveness of nitrates or nitrites in processed meat and its safety.