Nitrate-free bacon will soon appear on UK supermarket shelves amid health concerns surrounding the use of the chemical in foods.
The move follows warnings from the World Health Organisation (WHO) that nitrates added to meat increases the risk of bowel cancer. Naked Bacon, produced by the Northern Irish company Finnerbrogue, uses spice extracts and fruit during the curing process instead of nitrates.
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The healthier rashers will be available at some of the biggest grocers in the UK including Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Marks and Spencer and Morrisons.
The first packets of Naked Bacon will be available in Marks and Spencer on January 10, while Naked Ham launches on January 15.
Neil Parish, chairman of the Commons environment, food and rural affairs select committee told The Sun:
It’s a remarkable feat of food technology and a brilliant British success story.
UK consumers eat £916m worth of bacon every year, according to recent Kantar Worldpanel figures.
Earlier this month, the International Agency for Research on Cancer also reported its findings that eating processed meat can increase a person’s risk of colorectal cancer by 18 percent for every 50g consumed.
Processed meat describes anything that has had chemicals added to it to help preserve it.
Verdict takes a look at some of the other foods currently on the market which contain nitrates.
Bratwurst-type sausages, which are popular at festive markets contain nitrates.
Sodium nitrate is used in the curing process to make salami.
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Nitrates are added to ham. They help give the meat a salty flavour and a pink colour.
The US company Applegate Farms sells uncured hot dogs, but the majority of hotdogs found on supermarket shelves contain nitrates.
5. Smoked salmon
When salmon goes through the smoking process, nitrates are added.
6. Beef jerky
Beef jerky goes through a curing process which involves adding a mix of salt, sugar and sodium nitrite to the meat.