Pesticide tied to reproductive issues found in Cheerios, Quaker Oats

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A little-heard-of pesticide linked to infertility successful animals is showing up successful the overwhelming bulk of oat-based foods sold successful the United States, including fashionable cereal brands Quaker Oats and Cheerios.

The chemical, chlormequat, was detected successful 77 of 96 urine samples taken from 2017 and 2023, with levels expanding successful the astir caller years, a caller survey by the Environmental Working Group finds.

Further, chlormequat was recovered successful 92% of oat-based foods sold successful May 2023, including Quaker Oats and Cheerios, according to the research published Thursday successful the Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology. 

Some studies person shown chlormequat tin harm the reproductive strategy and disrupt fetal growth successful animals, a origin for interest arsenic to "whether it could besides harm humans," EWG stated

Environmental Protection Agency regulations let chlormequat to beryllium utilized connected ornamental plants only, not nutrient crops, grown the U.S. 

However, its usage has been allowed since 2018 connected imported oats and different foods sold crossed the country, and the EPA is present proposing to fto chlormequat beryllium utilized connected barley, oat, triticale and wheat grown successful the U.S — a program the EWG opposes

Organic fare is simply a safer bet, with conscionable 1 of 7 integrated samples recovered to incorporate debased levels of chlormequat, EWG said.

"Until the authorities afloat protects consumers, you tin trim your vulnerability to chlormequat by choosing products made with integrated oats, which are grown without synthetic pesticides specified arsenic chlormequat," according to the nonprofit advocacy group. 

Cheerios shaper General Mills and Quaker Oats, a part of PepsiCo, did not respond to requests for comment.

Kate Gibson

Kate Gibson is simply a newsman for CBS MoneyWatch successful New York.

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