Just in time to squash your Halloween fun, the Food and Drug Administration has nixed six synthetic flavorings commonly found in candy, soda, baked goods, booze, and gum.

The ingredients in question have all been shown to directly contribute to cancer in animals. They included synthetically-derived benzophenone (also used in rubber reusable food containers), ethyl acrylate, eugenic methyl ether (methyl eugenol), myrcene, pulegone, and pyridine.

Even if you’re an avid label checker, these names probably don’t look familiar to you. Since they fall under the umbrella of proprietary “artificial flavors,” the manufacturers don’t have to print them in the ingredients list, according the FDA.

The additives are known to contribute floral, cinnamon, mint, citrus, mango, pineapple, garlic, roasted onion, and woody flavors, according to a petition. 

The ingredients were proven to cause cancer in laboratory animals by the United States Department of Health and Human Services’ National Toxicology Program.

But no need to toss out your entire bag of Halloween candy in fear.

According to a FDA statement, “Their use results in very low levels of exposures and low risk,” noting that the test animals were subjected to much higher doses than a human would ever likely consume.

The ban will require manufactures to eliminate these additives from all products within 24 months.


Also see, Here’s how to store your Halloween candy longer.


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Meghan is a full-time writer exploring the fun facts behind food. She lives a healthy lifestyle but lives for breakfast, dessert and anything with marinara. She’s thrown away just as many meals as she’s proud of.