Bread, the go-to option for a quick, filling snack or sustaining breakfast in many an Indian home, has come under a cloud thanks to the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) identifying in it the presence of potassium bromate, a hitherto permitted food additive, but a carcinogen. Government is now considering banning the additive.

The CSE found that about 84% of 38 commonly available brands of pre-packaged breads, including pav and buns, tested positive for potassium bromate and potassium iodate. Many countries have banned their use.

Potassium bromate is used in breads because it increases dough strength and rising, and also gives the products a uniform finish. Potassium iodate is used as a flour treatment agent.


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