Thursday, March 7, 2013

Avoid Bakery Goods That Use Bromated Flour!

Avoid Bakery Goods That Use Bromated Flour!

Davidovich Bakery prides itself on the fact that it uses flour in the baking process for its world famous Davidovich Bagels that is designated as "unbromated".  This isn't simply a matter of using ingredients that the company deems conducive to the formulation of the best tasting, Artisan products on the market.   It is also a reflection of All Natural Products' commitment to never using products that the company believes poses any type of health risk to the public whatsoever.  Using this criteria, bromated flour is among the top ingredients the company has chosen to voluntarily ban.

Most consumers don't have a good understanding of what bromated flour is, why bakeries use it, and whether or not their baked good contain it.   Here is a simple summary:

Bromated Flour is flour that contains the chemical agent, potassium bromate.  This chemical is widely used in commercial baking to strengthen dough and promote rising.  Most brands of flour sold in supermarkets for home use also still contain potassium bromate despite the fact that studies dating back to the 1980's found that the chemical causes several types of cancer in laboratory rats.  The International Agency for Research on Cancer considers potassium bromate to be "possibly carcinogenic to humans".  The Center for Science in The Public Interest conducted tests going back to 1992 and 1998 which found levels of potassium bromate in numbers of baked goods which would be considered unsafe by the FDA.  

Bromated Flour is banned by a number of governments including The European Union, Canada, Brazil, Peru, and China.  In the U.S., the   has only recommended that bakers voluntarily cease using the carcinogen but many have not.  Aside from some initiatives in California there is no requirement commercial bakeries bring attention to the use of flour containing potassium bromate.  Only forward thinking bakeries have voluntarily ceased using flour containing this agent.  Davidovich Bakery is an example of a company which has never used flour containing potassium bromate for its world famous Davidovich Bagels despite the fact that the cost of such flour exceeds that of its chemically treated alternatives.  So this leaves the health conscious consumer with the burden to specifically identify companies like Davidovich Bakery that advertise their products as using unbromated flour.  It should never be presumed that simply because a companies baked good are advertised as "healthful" that their staple ingredient doesn't contain potassium bromate-"Let the Buyer Beware".