“Everything gives you cancer.” That’s what food cops and anti-consumer activists would have us believe, The Wall Street Journal declares. “Bread kills,” Swedish scientists have declared, claiming the “starch present in dough, when it is heated to bake the bread, turns into a ‘probable human carcinogen’… So, now that we know that bread kills, what next? For the EU at least, the way ahead seems clear. The precautionary principle, enshrined in EU law as the governing doctrine in cases of scientific uncertainty, surely indicates that a bread ban is in order, at least until more evidence about its real risks can be gathered. Perhaps a bakery quarantine, pending expensive ‘bread abatement’ procedures, should be considered.
“We know what you’re thinking — this is nonsense. If you are, you’re right — it is. But the precautionary principle (or more aptly, the paranoid principle) always was nonsense… The precautionary principle takes a maxim — better safe than sorry — radicalizes it, and turns it into a public-policy mandate. The result is an official standard — that nothing is considered safe until it is incontrovertibly proved safe — that is impossible to meet. Even for bread.”
And potato chips. Thanks to the same non-peer-reviewed study, they’re also on the hit list, The Washington Times writes. “An overdose of anything can kill you — even too much tap water… The real danger here is that the often-overzealous U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) may take the Swedish study and run with it — possibly banning or regulating all sorts of foods that Americans hold near and dear, and which are in all likelihood quite harmless to the human body.”
In fact, the average adult would have to eat 35,000 potato chips — that’s over 62 pounds of them — to reach a minimal level of carcinogens, if the Swedish study is accurate, writes Fox News’s Steve Milloy. And if you’re eating 62 pounds of potato chips in one sitting, you have bigger problems than junk science studies to worry about.