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PNRI: 15 vinegar brands made from synthetic acetic acid


Fifteen out of 17 brands of vinegar sold in major supermarkets in the Philippines are made from cancer-causing synthetic acetic acid, a year-long study by the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (PNRI) has indicated.

According to Maki Pulido's report on "24 Oras", experts warned that synthetic acetic acid, a by-product of petroleum, could cause various diseases including cancer.

"Halimbawa kapag nagproduce tayo ng mga diesel, ng mga oil, may mga by-product 'yan na 'yun ang ginagamit na raw material para sa paggawa ng mga synthetic na leather, mga synthetic na chemical," Raymond Sucgang, head researcher of the PNRI's Nuclear Analytical Techniques Application System, said.

Vinegar, to be safe for consumption, should come from the fermentation of natural ingredients.

"Ang synthetic acetic acid ay hindi dapat ginagamit sa paggawa ng pagkain or condiment, kundi ito is intendended as a raw material for the production of vinyl acetate...ito 'yung parang nakikita nating...kapag you want to waterproof your wood parquet 'yung mga tiles na wood," Sucgang said.

"If you consume this because it is synthetic material in the process of synthesis, there are impurities na nandoon, and these impurities, according to mga journals, these can cause cancer and degenerative diseases like Parkinson's."

According to the PNRI, vinegar brands being sold at supermarkets passed standards after going through "conventional" methods of testing.

PNRI recommends the application of the nuclear technique which tests the product using a liquid scintillation counter.

"Dapat kasama 'yung nuclear technique kasi siya talaga ang magsasabi kung synthetic or natural para at least bago siya mabenta bago bigyan ng license to operate ng FDA (Food and Drug Administration), sumunod muna sila sa standard," Sucgang said. —Margaret Claire Layug/NB, GMA News