A legal ban on artificial food additives which trigger hyperactive behaviour in children has been demanded by peers and MPs from all parties.
The Parliamentary Food and Health Forum published a report arguing the action is vital to protect children's health. The committee highlighted research showing that the suspect additives can prevent children's bodies from absorbing nutrients which are key to physical and brain development, and pointed out that some are already banned in the US and some Scandinavian countries.
The politicians accused the Government's Food Standards Agency of failing adequately to protect youngsters from harm caused by the chemicals in sweets, cakes and drinks. They want the FSA to issue an immediate warning to all parents to avoid artificial colours and preservatives that have been identified as a risk.
The forum, chaired by Labour peer Lord Rea, a former GP, took evidence from the country's leading nutrition experts. Member Dr Ian Gibson MP, a former chairman of the Commons Select Committee on Science and Technology, said:
"The evidence that we got suggested there were harmful effects on behaviour. The FSA has got much more to do on this in terms of taking precautions to protect children. Food is not only important in the context of obesity, we also need to take account of the effects on behaviour.
The food industry has made some welcome voluntary measures to reduce additive use, but that is not enough. We need Government action."
Source - Daily Mail