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Environment

OSHA Begins Rule On Diacetyl

by David J. Hanson
January 26, 2009 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 87, Issue 4

OSHA has issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking for regulating exposure to the food-flavoring compound diacetyl. Published in the Jan. 21 issue of the Federal Register, the notice asks for any information regarding adverse health effects associated with diacetyl, methods to evaluate and monitor exposure, employee training, and any related topics. In addition, the agency is seeking data on exposure and health effects of acetoin, acetaldehyde, acetic acid, furfural, and other compounds used in food flavorings. Diacetyl is the compound that was named a couple of years ago as the likely cause of severe lung disease in workers using it during the manufacture of microwave popcorn. Since then, most microwave popcorn makers have stopped using diacetyl.

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