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Frozen chips served in commercial kitchens may contain higher levels of carcinogen

28 September 2012 by

Frozen chips served in some commercial kitchens are most likely to contain higher levels of potentially cancerous chemicals, researchers have warned.

The factory process to prepare the frozen product for trade can influence the amount of acrylamide, a "probable human carcinogen" that remains in the chips by the time they reach the customer, reported The Metro.

"Acrylamide forms naturally during the cooking of many food products," reported an American Chemical Association investigation. "Acrylamide formation in fried potato products is inevitable."

The process is used to prepare frozen chips for the catering trade, such as pubs and fast-food operations, in order to reduce the cooking times.

Oven chips currently arrive sliced and par-fried so that they are raw on the inside and crisp on the outside but this process does not reduce the levels of the chemical compound.

The US research team, led by food chemist Donald Mottram, has called on manufacturers to use more efficient ways to cook raw potatoes that limits the amount of acrylamide.

Using a computer model, they found the most effective way was to reduce the fructose-to-glucose ratio once the potatoes had been cut into chips.

By Janie Manzoori-Stamford

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