US: Rice is safe, despite small levels of arsenic

September 6, 2013 by Mary Clare Jalonick

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says consumers should not worry too much about levels of arsenic in rice—but should vary their diets just in case.

The agency is releasing a study of arsenic in 1,300 samples of rice and rice products that is the largest study to date looking at the 's presence in rice. It shows varying levels, with the most arsenic in and the least in instant rice.

The FDA says the amounts are so small that rice is safe to eat, but it is still studying long-term effects of consuming rice. The agency has long encouraged consumers to vary their diets to minimize risk.

Rice likely contains arsenic because it is grown in water on the ground, where the contaminant can be absorbed.

Explore further: Denmark warns against rice for children

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Denmark warns against rice for children

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Denmark's Veterinary and Food Administration said Wednesday that parents should stop giving their children rice cakes and rice milk, saying the products contained unacceptable levels of inorganic arsenic.

US urged to set standards for arsenic in rice

September 19, 2012

(AP)—The U.S. Food and Drug Administration may consider new standards for the levels of arsenic in rice as consumer groups are calling for federal guidance on how much of the carcinogen can be present in food.

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