Beginning of the Advent calendar, then the Easter bunnies, and now “Kinder Chocolade”. Residues of mineral oil have been detected in white and brown chocolate bars.
Stuttgart – Everyone knows them, almost everyone loves them, and almost everyone has had a snack from them. “Children’s chocolate.” “Chocolate with a typical milk filling,” according to self-promotion, was the first sweet bar with individually wrapped bars when the product was launched in 1967. “Children’s chocolate has shaped the childhood of generations and it is impossible to imagine the best time – childhood – without it.”
The advertising slogan on the homepage of “Kinder Schokolade” is very beautiful – it’s almost hard to believe. Ironically, chocolate with an “extra part of milk” (the Italian group Ferrero who buried the famous logo in 2012) contains sugar (each 100g bar contains 52.5g of sugar, the milk content is barely measurable, so it’s very low .is) and mineral oil. You heard it right: mineral oil.
According to the online “Spiegel”, the Berlin consumer organization Foodwatch discovered oil residues in chocolate products from various manufacturers. According to Foodwatch, “significant impurities with aromatic and saturated mineral oil hydrocarbons” were found in Ferrero’s Kinder Schokolade and Kinder Riegel and Sun Rice chocolate rice cakes, which are produced for Aldi. The concentration is said to be much higher than that of chocolate from the Advent calendars and Easter bunnies, which were tested in March.
Lubricants for just about everything
Mineral oil is the lubricant driving the global economy. No car would drive, no plane would take off, and no ship would take off without the natural mixture of countless different hydrocarbons. In addition to the saturated hydrocarbon MOSH (for “mineral oil saturated hydrocarbon”), it also contains the aromatic hydrocarbon MOAH (for “aromatic hydrocarbon of mineral oil”). MOAH is suspected to be a carcinogen.
Mineral oils in cosmetics and food
In May 2015, the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) examined whether MOAH, which is also used in cosmetics (skin creams, lotions, body and face cleansers, sunscreens, self-tanners, deodorants, antiperspirants, and lip care products, -up, nail care products, hair gel, etc.) treatment is a health hazard. The result: “According to current scientific knowledge, the consumer is unlikely to be exposed to health risks.”
Mineral oils used in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics must be extremely pure, compliant, colorless, odorless, and tasteless. Since they are said to be harmless and harmless, so-called white oils are also used in the food industry – such as chocolate.
Foodwatch discovered traces of mineral oil in Easter bunnies, and Stiftung Warentest in chocolate from Advent calendars. Residues of carcinogenic aromatic mineral oil (MOAH) were found in tests at low concentrations in eight out of 20 rabbits from different manufacturers.
How does mineral oil get into chocolate?
From machine to chocolate
Mineral oils are used in the food industry as a lubricant for machinery, but also in packaging. The European Food Safety Authority classifies the Ministry of Health as “possibly carcinogenic and mutagenic”. The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) explains: “The presence of mineral oil components, especially MOAH, in food is generally undesirable.”
According to Foodwatch, the source of contamination in chocolate is transporting cocoa in contaminated jute bags and contacting oiling machines. Waste paper carton printing inks can also be a source of contamination. Materials from recycled paper, printed with inks containing mineral oil, penetrate into chocolate during storage.
No legal limits
To date, there are no legal limit values for mineral oil residues in food. Manufacturers and retailers have been working for years to ban food production, according to Spiegel. Aldi Süd has asked its suppliers to identify all sources of pollution and to use only production methods that are free of mineral oils.