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Nanosilver Safety

Nanosilver products

Nanosilver is one of the most commonly used nanomaterials in consumer products, predominately as a bactericide in kitchen crockery, cosmetics and even children’s toys. Major manufacturers are adding nano-silver into a wide variety of consumer products. Sunscreen manufacturers are adding nanoparticles to make sun-blocking ingredients like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide rub on clear instead of white.

Engineered particles are already used in salad dressing, sauces, diet drinks, boxed cake, muffin and pancake mixes to insure ease of pouring. Nano-non-stick is used in mustard and ketchup to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the bottle. Nestle and Unilever have completed development of nano-emulsion based ice cream that is lower in fat content but retains texture and flavor. Genetically modified nanoparticles are used in the thin wax coating on apples, pears, peppers, cucumbers and others to extend shelf life. These particles are widely used as fillers in hundreds of medicines, cosmetics and blocking agents in sunscreens. Bread makers spray loaves to make them shiny and keep them microbe-free longer. Nanoparticles are also sprayed on food plastic wrap to preserve freshness.


There have also been strong concerns expressed about the widespread use of nanosilver and the use of nanotechnologies in sunscreen. These nanoparticles can pass through human skin into the blood stream and then enter the brain, heart or liver. No-one fully understands yet what, if any, impact they will have once inside the human body. The strong concern on the use of nanosilver is that silver, a useful anti-bacterial agent, once scaled to nano size is far more potent, but that potency can have major effect on human health.

Many organizations concerned with human safety have warned that current toxicological tests on nanomaterials used in food products and packaging were inadequate and likely to be subject to a high degree of uncertainty calling for more research on the toxicity of nanoparticles in the body.

A Senior Food researcher says that in the absence of proper safety regulations, consumers are being left in the dark about the products they are consuming and are unknowingly putting their health and the environment at risk.

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